MAKE PERTH GREAT
New Year's Eve fireworks Four-day Australia Day 13 Christmas hot spots
A PLAN to breathe new life into Perth’s struggling CBD includes New Year’s Eve fireworks, more Christmas events and extending Australia Day celebrations over four days.
The City of Perth will also consider free parking after 4pm on weekdays to entice shoppers back to the city centre in the lead-up to Christmas.
“We need to re-inject activity and energy and effort back into the CBD,” Cr James Limnios said.
Property Council WA chief Lino Iacomella added: “There has been a lot of public expenditure on infrastructure like Elizabeth Quay and Yagan Square and that now needs to be followed up.”
A NEW plan to reboot the heart of Perth would see Australia Day celebrations extended to four days, fireworks on New Year’s Eve and bigger, better Christmas events.
The City of Perth will this month also consider a proposal for free parking after 4pm in the week before Christmas in a bid to convince shoppers to return to the city centre.
And a radical proposal for an “iconic landmark” comparable to the Sydney Opera House for Perth’s bicentenary in 2029 will take a major step forward if councillors agree to splash $50,000 on a feasibility study.
The move to revamp WA’s capital comes after the CBD was this year labelled “dead” and as Jemma Green takes on the job as Acting Perth Lord Mayor while Lisa Scaffidi appeals against her 18-month disqualification from office.
The City’s Finance and Administration Committee meets on Tuesday to discuss the $1.5 million plan, which is designed to breathe new life into a CBD where both commercial and retail vacancy rates remain stubbornly high.
The strategy includes a catalogue of activation events throughout the City with highlights including:
$280,000 for an eight-week Spring in the City campaign including flower canopies, pinwheels, laser tag and ninja warrior activity zones.
$180,000 to extend Christmas activities to 13 locations across the City in the form of a Christmas lights trail.
$120,000 to add fireworks to New Year’s Eve celebrations in Northbridge.
$180,000 to extend Australia Day celebrations into a fourday long-weekend event with a range of activities throughout the City.
$430,000 to promote the city as a business destination and to connect firms with landlords.
If approved, the plan will be presented to the City council the following week, when Cr James Limnios intends to argue the case for free parking in the week leading up to Christmas.
“I am going to introduce a motion for free parking after 4pm at all City of Perth operated parking facilities in the week before Christmas,” he said. “I’d also like to see firsthour free parking on designated high streets and heavily discounted parking rates on weekends to try and attract more people into the city.
“We need to re-inject activity and energy and effort back into the CBD. If we keep neglecting it and not driving change we’re going to end up a ghost town.”
Earlier this year, hundreds of people attended a Perth City Summit organised by Perth MP John Carey, who described parts of the CBD as “dead” after his election.
“One of the resounding calls for action from the Perth City Summit was the desperate need for activation beyond Forrest Place and throughout the entire city,” he said.
Property Council WA executive director Lino Iacomella said the funding needed to be accompanied by the cutting of red tape for businesses.
“Hopefully it will be supported by changes allowing more alfresco dining and street activities,” he said.
“There has been a lot of public expenditure on infrastructure like Elizabeth Quay and Yagan Square and that now needs to be followed up with . . . activation events that attract people to the CBD.”