Sunday, July 29, 2007

Why is the Tauranga CBD no longer working

The downtown shopping area of Tauranga is not working. People are chosing to shop elsewhere. Shops are closing down and moving out due to not making enough sales, high rents etc. The Tauranga council is spending a lot of time and money trying to find out WHY, and how to rejuvenate the area. At the same time they are running parking meters and parking buildings and all the wardens and bureacracy that goes with them enforcing them. Here is my take on the situation.


Why is it the councils responsibility to ensure the downtown area is a vibrant and happening place?

The downtown shopping area was a happening place long before the council started meddling in its proceedings!

Is the shopping area dependant on the council, or the council depandant on the shopping area (for the lucrative income they get from running it?)

The shopping area is inhabited by a number of private businesses, whose sole reason for being there is to make a profit, and earn a living.

These people pay rent to the property owners for of using their premises to sell their goods.

The property owners must pay rates to the council, (who recover this expense through rent.)

If council were only responsible for essential services, the rates would be a lot less, but because they have taken it upon themselves to be responsible for everything and anything, rates are much more expensive than they should be. - and hence the expensive rents, making the area unprofitable to those who ACTUALLY make it vibrant.

This situation has much in common with Atlas Shrugged, where the people who actually create wealth are so bludgeoned by the looters - the second-handers - the bureacracy, that they all move out and go on strike.

I wonder what would happen if all the retailers decided no to operate from here anymore, what would happen to the council! They would have nobody to collect their loot from - Then what?

Council interference in this situation is totally unnecessary.

To make the town a vibrant and happening place, remove council interference, and let the people whose livelihood depends on it do what is best for THEM. - just like they did before council interfered! Hand over the car parking situation so they may do whatever is best not to deter shoppers. Hand over - and not interfere in - entertainment which which attracts hordes of people annually. Not to impede with red tape and bureaucracy, requests by these people to enter into new schemes to attract shoppers.

Holding the council responsible for ensuring the livelihood of private businesses is wrong. All it is doing is justifying employment of another bureaucrat, paid for by the ratepayers - to ensure council are still involved in the problem they caused in the first place.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The great thing is that the Council charges rates on, say, the new bethlehem Centre, which is having trouble getting teneants. It then uses those rates to ensure that compeitors of the centre are subsidised in their business endeavours (in the CBD).
Sir Humphrey would be proud.

11:38 pm  

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