Our Economic Development and Tourism Strategy 2016-2021 outlines how we help local businesses. It's our blueprint for enhancing the vibrancy, prosperity and sustainability of the local economy.

In consultation with our community, we've identified the key opportunities and challenges necessary to support and grow local industry. From this, we've developed 5 key objectives as the focus for the City's economic development over the next 5 years.

1. Best-in-class neighbourhood shopping centres

We will help develop best-in-class neighbourhood shopping centres in our city.

The city’s shopping centres are underpinned by the retail and service sectors. They offer a diverse range of opportunities for social interaction and exchange. Retail employment accounts for 13 per cent of all jobs in Boroondara.

Shopping centres are places where people feel a strong sense of connection and ‘ownership’ and are places that support the liveability and appeal of the city.

Our initiatives include:

  • continuing with the Christmas in Boroondara program
  • promoting and supporting a Buy Local culture
  • continuing the special rate and charge schemes to allow trader associations to market shopping centres for the benefit of all resident traders.

2. Boroondara as a tourism destination

We will identify, showcase and promote the city’s tourism assets to help increase visits and spending by tourists.

Tourism is a key component of the Victorian economy and Melbourne attracts more domestic visitors than any other Australian city. Retail is a key driver of tourism to Melbourne, both for domestic and international visitors.

Boroondara has a range of shopping options including four distinct markets, dining and hospitality offerings and a burgeoning accommodation sector.

There's also a significant international student population, and associated visiting friends and relatives, because of Swinburne University of Technology and Melbourne University campuses, as well as the concentration of independent and public secondary schools in the area.

Our initiatives include:

  • using technology-based facilities and campaigns to boost visitor numbers
  • promoting our markets
  • investigating and delivering marketing initiatives to promote our city to visitor markets, such as The Boroondara Pocketbook.

3. Ready for business

We will provide quality economic enablers to support business development.

Our city has a successful and diversified local economy with well-developed ‘enablers’ of economic and tourism development including quality infrastructure, a skilled workforce and world-class education and service sectors.

Initiatives include:

  • continuing to advocate to levels of government on the city’s critical infrastructure needs, for example, the emerging digital economy, broadband capacity and the NBN, transport infrastructure, including public transport, tourism infrastructure, community infrastructure
  • investigating a pilot WiFi project in partnership with two neighbourhood shopping centres with a special rate and charge scheme that supports marketing and business development initiatives
  • supporting opportunities to provide local jobs that align with the skill sets of all residents, including people with a disability and from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

4. Helping business establish and grow

Council will support business establishment and growth, industry development and investment attraction.

Boroondara's economy includes a diverse range of businesses within a number of industries. The economy will continue to evolve over time and will require ongoing business establishment, growth and investment to be sustained.

Council currently provides a range of business support services, which includes:

Our initiatives include:

  • identifying opportunities to support emerging ‘preneur’ businesses, including youth and the home-based sector
  • supporting the development of programs to increase home-based and micro business capacity building and innovation practices
  • supporting and promoting activities that advance the transition of businesses to optimise use of technology.

5. Civic leadership and partnerships

Council will continue to provide leadership and foster partnerships that contribute to economic and tourism development within the city.

Our strategy requires a collaborative approach and coordination of Council, state and federal agencies, key sectors, regional organisations, industry, business, community service clubs and groups and the community.

Our initiatives include:

  • evaluating the structure and objectives of the Business Boroondara Network Steering Committee and investigate the establishment of a broader advisory committee including commercial property owners and key stakeholders
  • collaborating with Swinburne University to create a vision for attracting businesses into the City of Boroondara, which align with the university’s expertise and new technology and innovation capability to leverage investment outcomes and business growth opportunities for local business and the community
  • forming a working group of Council representatives and Swinburne representatives to meet regularly to explore collaborative initiatives to support local business.

For detailed insight into our initiatives designed to help boost local tourism and to support our local businesses, see our Economic Development and Tourism Strategy 2016 - 2021.

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