Coming out of COVID
By Shane Wylie, Chamber of Commerce media director
I know I’m not the only one that has woken up some mornings expecting to see Mila Jovovic patrolling the esplanade picking off stray zombies in some post-apocalyptic B-grade horror movie.
But the good news is we’re on our way out. How long this will take and what the world is going to look like is the realm of much more intelligent people than I but I can tell you that I will be happily fitting in any restaurant this week that will take me for a beer and a friendly chat.
Docklands Community Farmers Market
What COVID has produced is some very quick pivoting and business adaptations. Docklands Sunday Markets has been an institution but the owner was smart enough to realise it was becoming stale and quickly adapted to the new world – buy local, buy fresh, enjoy it as an experience.
The very first community farmers market was right in the middle of lockdown but the City of Melbourne’s pedestrian counters showed NewQuay promenade with numbers that rivalled the 2019 average for a Sunday. Amazing cheeses, fruit, vegies, pastries all presented on what was a glorious autumn day. Stay tuned to our socials – http://www.fb.me/melbdock as the word is that it’s likely to be held more often.
Docklands coming together
I recently provided a verbal report to the City of Melbourne and Development Victoria. The figures have been almost unbelievable. With the closing of huge businesses like ANZ, Myer, NAB, NBN, Grant Thornton, Latitude – combining with the closure of Central Pier, meaning no event bookings, combining with no tourists, combining with international students going home, Docklands, on average has some 100,000 less visitors on a daily basis. But ... out walking every day, visiting our members, one thing has become very clear. Docklands has pulled together. We’ve all gone out, had a coffee, ordered takeaway, shared our love for our local businesses and it’s brought this community closer together.
Then, the bad side
Of course, as would be expected at times like this, we’ve also seen a rise in unacceptable behaviours.
There are two young men actively targeting buildings on the NewQuay side of Docklands, prying open cages and checking for open cars. There’s also another two young men tagging Docklands walls. Don’t take any chances. If you see these activities simply call 000. We’ll follow up the graffiti removal but if we can catch any of these four low-lifes in the act then we can have the police deal with them on site.