Businesses slow to take up offer

AARON LEAMAN
Last updated 05:00 16/07/2014

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A free offer to spruce up some of Hamilton's tired-looking central city buildings failed to win interest from property owners.

Hamilton Central Business Association's general manager Sandy Turner said that the association had secured a sponsor for the scheme and the services of a handyman but, to date, no building owners had taken up the free offer of a clean-up.

The spruce-up also included removing out-of-date signs from shop fronts.

Turner said the group would now approach businesses directly and ask them to nominate buildings they found "most offensive".

Turner yesterday presented the association's annual report to the city council's business and investment subcommittee.

The association received $280,000 last year from a targeted business improvement district (BID) rating.

The association's report highlighted continuing challenges for central city businesses, especially anti-social behaviour issues, loitering and the general perception of safety in the CBD, and parking.

Turner said the association had recently brainstormed ideas around parking in the central city and were keen to discuss them with the council.

A survey of central city businesses showed many still felt at a commercial disadvantage to The Base and Westfield Chartwell which offer free parking.

The year also included many highlights for the central city, with the association involved in a number of events to attract people into central Hamilton, Turner said.

Another popular fixture was the association's annual business awards, with ticket sales raising $6000 for the association.

Turner said planning would start soon around establishing fan zones in the city for next year's Cricket World Cup and the Fifa U-20 World Cup.

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- Waikato Times

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