Fitzroy Street footpath fees reductions announced

By  |  0 Comments

By Mfufu Zambezi-Raskladushkin

On the 25th of August, City of Port Phillip councillors came to the agreement to reduce footpath trading fees*, levied on tables and seats located in public areas, from $109 to $73 per table and from $135 to $108 per seat/person per annum. Decision will be applied retrospectively from the beginning of the current financial year. This measure brings levies to a mid level with a potential of further reduction.

Obviously any city council is constantly engaged in a balancing act between local government budget requirements, sustainability of financial viability of ratepayers and maintaining vitality of municipality. This is one of the City of Port Phillip Council’s measures aimed at rejuvenation of an ailing precinct. Others include street scaping, CCTV cameras proposed deployment, reduction/removal of parking fees and other initiatives. Some of them are completed, some are at various stages of reviews/applications to relevant authorities.

On a pleasant Sunday afternoon your humble servant took a leisurely stroll past scarce numbers of casually dressed alfresco diners (as well as beggars – both resigned and aggressive; tourists – all three of them – puzzled what fuss is all about this location and a sad row of closed eateries with agent lease sings in dirty windows) to inhale the atmosphere and to tally up tables and seats all toeing the line behind small silver coins of delineation markers – boundary signposts indicating segregation line between pedestrian zone and open air furniture permit area. All in order to answer a simple question: how much these reductions will save overall per annum to high street traders (based on live observation without any pretension to absolute accuracy)?

Results are captured on tally counter screenshot presented. Would this be enough as an only relief/assistance measure in isolation? Hardly. As part of a parcel of Council’s initiatives? Every bit of help from municipal authorities, even small one, will definitely assist financial viability of traders and a complete suite of measures to upgrade amenities/security may do the trick. Now it will be up to us, general public, to vote with our wallets whether we are collectively willing and able to revive The Grand Old Lady who is – though currently unwell – will definitely reinvent herself as was the case many times before…

Find us on FacebookFind us on FacebookFind us on FacebookFind us on Facebook