City of Melbourne Councillors will consider a plan to waive permit fees for public events in Docklands until the end of 2020.
Lord Mayor Sally Capp said permit fees for new and some existing events could be waived to support Docklands following the decision by the Victorian Government to close Central Pier indefinitely because of safety concerns.
“It’s important we do everything we can to attract more people to Docklands,” the Lord Mayor said.
“There’s no doubt that many local businesses are doing it tough at the moment and I would encourage everyone to rediscover Docklands and everything it has to offer.”
“We’ve listened to what local businesses have been telling us and we’re responding in a way designed to help them get back on their feet.”
Docklands Chamber of Commerce estimates the closure of Central Pier will result in a loss of between 1-1.5million visitors to Docklands annually.
Council already waives some event permit fees for community and not-for-profit event organisers. The proposal would see this extended to all public events for Docklands for the remainder of 2020.
The proposal would not cover private event permits such as weddings and Christmas parties.
Chair of the Prosperous City Portfolio Kevin Louey said the removal of fees would help address the current downturn in the number of visitors to Docklands.
“This would help to drive new event business to the area by making things easier for event organisers,” Cr Louey said.
“We want to attract new events to Docklands to help activate the local area, particularly Victoria Harbour.”
“Docklands is a fantastic precinct offering the best in community events as well as shopping, business and entertainment.”
The plan would also see an increase in promotional support from Council for all public events in Docklands for the rest of 2020.
Council will also investigate what additional programming and marketing event organisers can put in place to attract more people.
If approved, the City of Melbourne would forego more than $71,000 in revenue from event fees.
The Future Melbourne Committee paper is available on the City of Melbourne website.