Following community feedback throughout July, the City of Boroondara has endorsed a five-year Economic Development and Tourism Strategy for 2016 to 2021.
We heard feedback on topics such as what makes our local shopping centres best-in-class, the drawcards that you’re proud to show visitors, as well as motivations for ‘buying local’.
The draft strategy addressed a range of sustainable economic development issues, challenges and opportunities that were determined through research, community consultation and analysis.
We received responses from business owners, residents, workers, visiting shoppers, regional development bodies, educational institutions and students.
Respondents overall supported the Strategy’s five key objectives. These included a focus on neighbourhood shopping centres, Boroondara as a tourism destination, being ‘ready for business’, helping businesses establish and grow, as well as continuing to provide leadership and foster key partnerships.
When asked what would motivate people to buy local more often, the top five responses were quality of offering and value for money, diversity of shops, accessibility, greater advertising and locally sourced products.
Councillor Jim Parke, Mayor of Boroondara, said Council will help provide the economic enablers in Boroondara that business needs.
“Importantly, in this five-year strategy we’ve strongly recognised the value of tourism and the visitor economy as a key sector of Boroondara’s economy.
“Our City has a significant visitor economy and when asked about the top aspects of Boroondara they would be proud to show a visitor, people highlighted the parks and gardens, shopping centres, restaurants and cafes, markets, plus heritage buildings and gardens.
“The City of Boroondara actively continues to support a range of these visitor destinations including our markets and our 54 local shopping centres, which we proudly continue to help evolve as focal points for the local community and visitors alike,” said Councillor Parke.
“We provide a broad range of business support services through the Business Boroondara program, including networking events, specialist workshops, plus access to free business mentoring services.”
As a direct result of community feedback, the City of Boroondara will also investigate the possibility of a ‘locally purchased’ certification scheme for retailers in Boroondara’s shopping centres, as well as gauge support for other kinds of local shopper reward schemes.
[Read the Economic Development and Tourism Strategy 2016-2021]