A U.K. City Council has ordered a private company that it cannot build luxury flats and offices on a site it recently purchased that included a closed gay-bar unless it agrees to include a new gay bar as part of the development plan.
Tower Hamlets Council ordered earlier this month that developers Regal Homes must build a gay bar that will “remain a lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender-focused venue for a minimum of 12 years,” regardless of its ability to stay economically afloat.
The bar will only be deemed ‘complete’ once it passes an inspection from the mayor’s office who will make sure it is sufficiently “gay.” Standards for determining “gayness” were not disclosed.
“I am delighted that as a council we are leading the way in using innovative ways to protect spaces such as the Joiners Arms site,” said Tower Hamlets Mayor John Biggs.
The order comes after a majority of London’s gay bars have gone out of business over the past years, from 125 in 2006 to 53 today. (Read more from “Developer Must Build Gay Bar in New Development, or It Won’t Get Building Permit” HERE)