The City of Melbourne and the Victorian Government have announced a landmark $100 million recovery fund to reactivate the central city as we progress towards a COVID-safe reopening.
The Melbourne City Recovery Fund will invest in programs and infrastructure to kick-start the economy through extending outdoor trading, waiving permit fees, activating vacant shopfronts, and increasing marketing, events and entertainment to attract workers and visitors back to the city.
Lord Mayor Sally Capp said the Melbourne City Recovery Fund includes $50 million from the City of Melbourne and $50 million from the Victorian Government to help businesses recover from the pandemic and keep Melburnians in jobs.
“This fund will provide support for businesses to trade safely and help encourage customers back into the city once restrictions ease. These businesses are part of the fabric of our city and will be crucial to our recovery,” the Lord Mayor said.
“Funding to help local businesses become more COVID safe or expand their trade outdoors will be available as part of this package.
“We will financial support to help businesses trade outside along with making improvements to our streets and public places so that Melbourne businesses can thrive again as we welcome people back to the city.
“The funding will also be used to tailor events so we can reactivate our city safely and provide a boost for hospitality and retail businesses.
“We need to become a city of yes, and it’s never been more important to be proactive and positive for our local businesses.”
The Melbourne City Recovery Fund includes:
- $30 million for small to medium sized businesses to rapidly adapt their operations to be more COVID Safe and comply with health directions
- $30 million for COVID Safe events and cultural activities to attract visitors back to the central city
- $40 million on infrastructure works to support the return of people to the central city through making the city more safe, accessible and sustainable.
The City of Melbourne Councillors will tomorrow consider the COVID-19 Reactivation and Recovery Plan.
“Our plan provides proactive and practical ways to encourage people back into the city safely but we are also open to any proposals from local businesses or precinct groups about what would work in their local area,” the Lord Mayor said.
The Lord Mayor said the city economy was booming before COVID-19, reaching a record $104 billion last year, which is 24 per cent of Victoria’s Gross State Product.
“Economic research shows the pandemic could reduce Gross Local Product by up to $110 billion over the next five years compared to pre COVID-19 projections,” the Lord Mayor said.
“I would like to thank the Premier for partnering with us in delivering a jointly funded recovery package for businesses and workers. This is great for kick-starting the economy and safely welcoming people back into our city,” the Lord Mayor said.