Council boost for local businesses

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Kaylah Joelle Baker

The City of Melbourne has continued its support of 10 precinct associations with up to $90,000 each in an effort to help city businesses succeed.

The annual funding comes from the council’s Business Precinct Program, and among the associations being supported are City Precinct, the newly-formed Melbourne Chinatown Association, Collins Street Precinct Group and Greek Precinct Association.

The precinct associations are core to the city in the way they connect local traders with one another and the council, and City Precinct’s president Carly Michael said it was “really starting to feel like a village”.

“I feel like we are bringing businesses back to the city via business, and this is the core of the City Precinct,” Ms Michael said.

As well as hosting monthly social events to connect members with one another and their businesses, City Precinct is looking ahead at more ways it can create loyalty, connection and give people a reason to come into the city.

“This funding means we can execute programs that are going to benefit our members who are traders within postcode 3000,” Ms Michael said.

“It gives us the ability to bring people together for social events so we can foster community, connection and business relationships. It has also given us the ability to support our members during this transition to a more rapidly changing environment.”

Following the additional funding, Ms Michael said it would continue to develop up-skilling programs and as well as its successful free walking tours, taking customers around the city to their members.

New to this year’s funding rollout is the Melbourne Chinatown Association.

Following the City of Melbourne’s funding announcement, a spokesperson for the association said the council’s support meant “a great deal” as it continued to support existing businesses, workers, residents, students and property owners while attracting new talent to the area.

“All funding, regardless of the source, will always be put towards initiatives that can tangibly improve the Chinatown precinct,” the spokesperson said.

“This includes building robust membership, bringing greater footfall into the precinct to support visitation and spending, coordinating business development initiatives such as networking functions and facilitating localised activation initiatives.”

Other precincts in and around the city who received funding include Carlton Inc, Docklands Chamber of Commerce, Kensington Business Association, Melbourne City North Business Association, North & West Melbourne Precinct Association and Yarra River Business Association. •

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