Draft Economic and Tourism Plan
On the point of tourism, specifically, Council stated there was to be a focus on the 'visitor economy' and the 'promotion of Boroondara as a desirable destination'. In their report, dated 12 December 2022, Council outlined several priority areas to 'contribute positively to Boroondara’s liveability and help grow the visitor economy into the future' but did not specify details on how these will be achieved. The priority areas are;
Enhancing activity centres and shopping precincts
Promoting business growth and investment in Boroondara
Encouraging environmentally sustainable innovations in business practices
Attracting non-local visitors to the area
The report identified several factors that have affected the local economy: 'the impact of COVID-19', 'worker shortages', 'the rise in remote work arrangements', 'increased online shopping', 'a rise in cost of living' and 'demand for health and aged care service'. The report also makes mention of several Council plans, such as Glenferrie's Place Plan, as 'significant to local tourism and economy'. Yet, there remains a notable lack of updated information on the draft Glenferrie Place Plan since December 2021.
Thus far the new Economic Development and Tourism Plan can be summarised as an extension of the statewide study into falling tourist numbers and economic downturn. Council has identified a general economic profile of Boroondara including how the above mentioned impacts have affected locals, and more broadly, the entire state. Areas such as shopping precincts, parks and gardens, heritage character, real estate rates, educational institutes and hospitals are mentioned. The report concludes simply that consultation with the community 'will inform the development of the final Plan to be presented at a future meeting of Council for endorsement by mid-2023.'
To find out more information, Council are sharing the draft Economic Development and Tourism Plan from 25 January to 10 March 2023 during which time community feedback is welcomed. Go to engage.boroondara.vic.gov.au/economic-development-plan to offer feedback.