Frustrated shop owners gather at Red Square

Shop owners gathered in the Red Square. Image and Video: Daniel Hines/SunLive.

Click the image above to watch the video

Frustrated shop owners and members of the public fed up with the way the CBD is being treated, took to the streets today to voice their opinions.

A group of about 40-50 people gathered in Red Square this morning to express their concerns and frustration about the way Tauranga residents are treating the CBD.

One of the topics that was brought up was the lack of carparks in the city, and that staff are fed up trying to find a park every morning.

“If we lose our businesses, people lose their jobs. There are human faces behind these businesses and we need support from landlords and councillors,” says one person during the discussion.

“What can we do to get people into the CBD?” says another.

Owner of the Tauranga Lone Star branch Trevor Donaghy says he isn’t originally from Tauranga and moved here around five years ago. During that time he says he’s seen a massive amount of growth happen in a very short space of time.

He also says he’s pretty frustrated with a few things.

“I just think it’s some of the communication around what’s happening and some of the planning with everything happening at once, at one time.

“Parking is one of those conversations that comes up at every gathering in relation to the CBD, and I find it incredible that somebody hasn’t sat down and come up with a plan that is going to work really well. I’m surprised that somebody isn’t doing that now in a year when we’ve got local body elections as well.

“We all know the CBD is going to be something great, but we have to make it that, and for that to happen people have to get engaged. People attract people.

“As retailers, we all have to work really hard on making our own businesses a destination for people to come in and together it’ll work really well.

“But getting through this period is going to be frustrating,” says Trevor.

Owner of the Crown and Badger Jessica Rafferty says from her point of view, she thinks the gathering went really well.

“We had a really good turnout. It’s just really about letting everybody know that there are people in the city centre and it’s not all doom and gloom, and there are good things happening.

“There’s lots of businesses down here that are really making a living and making the city a better place which is about celebrating that really.

“Honestly, I think mind-set just needs to change. Can you go and find a park in Wellington? Not really, so there is not really a point in complaining about it.

“We’ve got a beautiful city with waterfront views as well, and I think it’s just worth celebrating and people actually appreciating all the good stuff that’s going on down here.”

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Posted on 08-08-2019 09:26 | By Kancho

Of course you can have free parking ! Just limit the time so it’s not used by workers in the city all day. Short term parking works elsewhere. Yes it still needs parking wardens so no job loss es

Waterfront Parking

Posted on 08-08-2019 09:07 | By The Caveman

Don’t worry, the waterfront parking is also in the councillors sights - it’s going to disappear - more "park" space for people to enjoy !!

Wellington doesn't need as many carparks because...

Posted on 07-08-2019 18:18 | By lpm67

There is a fantastic public transport network based mainly around trains. It’s comfortable, regular, easy to access and affordable. Plus they operate at hours that actually get workers to work on time if you start early and are available if you finish late. They are not overcrowded or squished in and they don’t drive past you because they are full or the driver chose not to see your hand frantically waving. And they don’t discriminate against children trying to get to school.

Waterfront Destination

Posted on 07-08-2019 17:50 | By Fernhill22

Why aren’t TCC utilising our Waterfront as a destination for people to come down to & to re-invent the CBD. TCC could be working with Private developers to build Piers off the Waterfront/ or to Reclaim land so that we can have Shops and Restaurants located on the piers/ waterfront to make it a destination to come down to just like the Viaduct in Auckland. Utilise the train tracks to bring commuters in to town, or to bring Cruise passengers across from the Mount and make it a vibrant place to be. TCC need to work with Landlords & Developers to knock down these older buildings in town creating new office space that corporate companies will lease & to bring investment & creating a proper CBD area. Let’s make downtown TGA a destination people want to come to and to enjoy a designated Retail area on the Waterfront.

Car Parking

Posted on 07-08-2019 15:34 | By Gaz

You cannot have free parking as many shop owners ask for. It would actually be detrimental to their business, because there would be no parking left after the people working in the CBD all parked there for all day.

CBD parking

Posted on 07-08-2019 15:20 | By Pete Morris

I cannot understand why TCC has just increased parking charges given the difficulties retailers are facing during the lengthy construction period happening downtown. I would have thought giving them some help was in order. Pete Morris - Tauranga resident.

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