BUSINESS owner Caroline Johnston says more needs to be done to rejuvenate Maylands and support local businesses after a fall in foot traffic and increase in parking problems.
Ms Johnston said when she opened Look Feel Be in 2011 it was a risk and the area was going through a “massive” revitalisation.
“The first two years were fabulous, even with the global financial crisis at the front door, as residents were thrilled by the investment in their area,” she said.
“We’ve loved supporting the change and would like to encourage residents in the area to continue to support local.
“The shopping precinct needs more visitors.
“While some of the novelty may have worn off at a time when we are all looking for the next glossy new thing, there are new businesses in the ’hood opening and others who’d like to continue yet are really hurting.”
Ms Johnston said there were many challenges involved with owning a business in the area and that immediate action needed to be taken to address the increasing impact on parking.
She said a solution could be to use the unused land behind shops on Eighth Avenue with incentives offered to private landowners to encourage them to develop parking space. “Don’t allow 30-minutes spots, we need one-hour-plus spots and a management system that is clear,” Ms Johnston said.
“We need to make sure there is a balance of retail businesses, cafes, services and education/art activity in the area.” Ms Johnston said there needed to be a stronger relationship between small business and the council.
Then Mayor Sylvan Albert said with new venues and stores opening on a regular basis, Maylands was emerging into a creative and bustling hub.
“With this comes a demand for access to these new activities, including parking, public transport, cycle paths and pedestrian friendly urban streets,” Mr Albert said.
“The council has heard the concerns about parking availability in Maylands and, at its Ordinary Council meeting on April 28, resolved to undertake a car parking strategy for Maylands town centre to address the long-term management.
“City officers are currently finalising the scope of this long- term strategy.”
Mr Albert said the council also supported the Public Transport Authority’s proposed upgrade and expansion of the existing car parking areas at the Maylands train station.
“The PTA has submitted a planning application with the West Australian Planning Commission for an additional 105 parking bays for which they in turn sought council consideration,” he said.
“The extra 105 parking bays will decrease the pressure on surrounding streets.”