John Albright, president and CEO of Consolidated-Tomoka Land Co., threw out an audacious idea at Monday night’s monthly meeting of the Beachside Redevelopment Committee.
“I think a bold move would be to shut down Main Street and make it pedestrian only,” suggested Albright, who serves as vice chair of the temporary committee.
Speaking three days before tens of thousands of motorcycles will roar onto Main Street for this weekend’s Biketoberfest, Albright offered the idea as a way to help jump-start retail on the corridor that for decades has struggled to attract customers when the out-of-town bikers aren’t around.
Fellow committee member Paul Zimmerman, who has lived on Daytona Beach’s oceanfront most of his life, is open to the idea of banning cars from the road that connects the Halifax River to the ocean. He also wants to take a hard look at the rules that surround Main Street’s two big biker parties, including parameters for itinerant vendors. He suspects the raucous Bike Week and Biketoberfest are directly related to stable homeowners moving off the beachside many years ago.