The Sydney Business Chamber says the NSW Government’s announcement of $1.5 million to fund the CBD activation grants program is good news for struggling hospitality and retail businesses hit hard by Covid lockdowns and will help bring workers and visitors back into the city centre.
“This is a positive step toward bringing CBD streets and public spaces back to life through encouraging more al-fresco dining options and a range of cultural activities to entertain and encourage city workers back into their offices, as well as visitors to the city,” said Katherine O’Regan, Executive Director of the Sydney Business Chamber.
“Sydney’s CBD contributes around 24% to the State’s economy and it needs all the assistance the State and City of Sydney can provide to revitalize its still quiet streets – both mid-week and on weekends.”
“Cutting red tape to allow quicker approvals for sidewalk dining will help but providing grants to businesses to activate outdoor spaces and for our creative arts sector to entertain people, is a good means to boosting economic activity in the city centre.”
“The $1.5 million funding announced today is part of the State Government’s $20 million partnership with the City of Sydney and the activation grants of between $5,000 and $50,000 for businesses, artists and performers and community groups is well targeted.”
“Recent retail spending figures show people are beginning to open their wallets again and more money flowing into the city centre will be good for business and employment as Covid cases continue to trend down in the city.”
“The extension of trading hours for cafes and takeaways will help the hospitality and accommodation sectors, while revitalizing the CBD by funding cultural activities is a good step to supporting a 24-hour Sydney economy as summer approaches.”
“It is vital though that all businesses and public events enforce Covid–safe practices to ensure public confidence in the city centre as a safe place to visit and work.”