I want to also help the Whangarei CBD meet its potential which I believe is not happening.
I have other ideas for the CBD such as turning vacant lots into central living apartments. This is a place in our district where we can build up and house more residents, students, tourists. People in the CBD will bring life back into it.
Presently our Councils, take approximately $3m from our CBD (Properties included within Walton Street, Bank Street and Dent Street) on rates. Our business owners get very little support from Council for that money, with less than 800 carpark where Okara (a private development) has over 3,000 for the same size area, the CBD has no free rubbish collection and streets that are not kept clean. It is no wonder that our CBD is struggling.
The CBD is a community space, a business centre, an employment hub and so much more. Why is the Council milking it dry
As a company director I feel that something needs to change.
The overhead fees of rental spaces, wages, legislation versus a store’s daily earnings has grown disproportionately unfair and it's no wonder businesses are leaving the CBD like a ship taking on water.
As a community, I feel we should prioritize new policies to foster entrepreneurship and good business measures in Whangarei, which is why I would like to see the CBD business rates reduced over the next three years, with that money going into events and activities led by the business community to drive people back into the town. And yes that includes more parking.