Shoring up busi­nesses

Kwinana Courier - - Front Page - Vanessa Sch­mitt

ROCK­ING­HAM busi­ness own­ers are re­port­ing a big drop in trade since work started on the Rock­ing­ham Beach fore­shore re­vi­tal­i­sa­tion this month.

Some fore­shore restau­rants are re­port­ing a 50 to 70 per cent re­duc­tion in trade.

Sun­sets man­ager Kylie Gil­lis said the con­struc­tion work had had a “huge af­fect” on busi­ness and she was wor­ried.

She said trade had re­duced by about half in the past two weeks.

“In the past week we’ve lost money,” Ms Gil­lis said. “It’s hard on staff.” Steel Tree su­per­vi­sor Amanda Wil­liamson said con­struc­tion work had taken away a bit of trade.

“It’s not the best; it’s been pretty quiet. But we can’t do any­thing about it,” she said.

Ur­ban Re­treat Day Spa owner Carol Friel­ing re­ported a 30 per cent drop in trade.

“I have no­ticed and it’s scares me,” she said.

“We’ve been here for 11 years and it’s the worst I’ve ever felt it. We’ve re­duced staff hours.”

Fore­shore busi­ness own­ers are ap­peal­ing to the pub­lic to make an ef­fort to sup­port them.

“We need peo­ple to keep com­ing,” Mrs Friel­ing said.

The #sup­port the fore shore busi­nesses dur­ing there no sis the hash tag used to drum up so­cial me­dia sup­port for the cam­paign.

City of Rock­ing­ham Mayor Barry Sam­mels said the fore­shore project would de­liver a mag­nif­i­cent fore­shore area that both busi­nesses and vis­i­tors could ben­e­fit from well into the fu­ture.

“Dur­ing the mas­ter­plan devel­op­ment, de­sign process and be­fore con­struc­tion be­gan, the City en­gaged with busi­ness own­ers to help them un­der­stand the project and the po­ten­tial im­pacts it may have,” he said.

“These dis­cus­sions with busi­ness op­er­a­tors were very suc­cess­ful and re­sulted in many pos­i­tive out­comes that the City is work­ing on to as­sist busi­nesses.

“In the mean­time, the City would like to re­mind res­i­dents and vis­i­tors that the fore­shore area is still open and ready for busi­ness.”

Cr Sam­mels said steps taken by the City to min­imise the in­con­ve­nience in­cluded waiv­ing al­fresco fees for di­rectly im­pacted out­door eat­ing es­tab­lish­ments dur­ing the 2018-19 fi­nan­cial year and main­tain­ing pedes­trian ac­cess through­out the project.

Con­struc­tion on the fore­shore re­vi­tal­i­sa­tion will stop from De­cem­ber 7 un­til Fe­bru­ary 18.

“This pause in con­struc­tion will al­low the busi­nesses on the fore­shore to take full ad­van­tage of the busy sum­mer pe­riod,” Cr Sam­mels said.

“The City is also go­ing to run an ex­ten­sive ad cam­paign in lo­cal news­pa­pers en­cour­ag­ing vis­i­tors to con­tinue vis­it­ing the fore­shore area and sup­port­ing lo­cal busi­nesses.”

Pic­ture: Gabrielle Jef­fery

Fore­shore busi­ness own­ers Daniel Wake­lin from Head Stu­dio Rock­ing­ham, Sunny Nguyen from Venus Nail and Spa, Kylie Gil­lis from Sun­sets, Carol Friel­ing from Ur­ban Re­treat Day Spa, Clint Wil­cox from Steel Tree, Olga Kolyas­nikova from Three Wishes, Marc Kenly from Lat­ti­tude 32 and Vat 116 and Bill Spence from Surf Mainia.

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