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Local traders praise Council efforts to expand outdoor dining in Apollo Bay
December 23, 2020

2012 ab parklets 1Local business operators in Apollo Bay have commended Council’s ‘parklets’ initiative which has expanded outdoor dining capacity in the town.

Council worked with the local community to develop the temporary ‘parklets’, conducting five rounds of consultation with traders in Apollo Bay to develop the State Funded project.

Owner of the Apollo Bay Bakery Sally Cannon said it was great to have the ‘parklets’ in place before Christmas.

“We’re very happy with the Colac Otway Shire getting this up and running before Christmas, it will be fantastic for our business and other businesses in Apollo Bay.

“It is going to help people stay safe with social distancing which is very important leading in to the busiest time for the Great Ocean Road,” Ms Cannon said.

Owner of Sandy Feet Café Mark Paech said the initiative would increase the capacity of his business under COVID dining restrictions.

“As I have a small inside dining area, the extended outside trading area has allowed me to double my capacity, without that I, along with other businesses, would have a lot of trouble getting to the end of the year as we rely on the summer period trade. It’s an amazing thing that Council has done,” Mr Peach said.

Development and Community Services General Manager Ian Seuren said Council were pleased to have the project completed in time for peak season.

2012 ab parklets 2“Council engaged local contractors to build and concrete the ‘parklets’ and safety barriers; they did a great job in getting the project completed quickly and we achieved the best possible outcome with the State Government Outdoor Dining Grant funds of $250,000 spent locally,” Mr Seuren said.

President of the Apollo Bay Chamber of Commerce Bob Knowles also praised the use of local contractors.

“It’s wonderful that these things are built locally. New seating capacity will allow us to better accommodate street traffic, it’s very responsive from the Council for putting it together in couple of weeks,” Mr Knowles said.

Mr Seuren said some parking bays had to be temporarily removed to make way for the outdoor dining space.

“We did have to remove some parking bays to make way for the outdoor dining space and we encourage drivers to utilise the Pascoe Street carpark where spaces are often available.” Mr Seuren said.

“Council have also converted four spaces to 15-minute short term parking bays near the Apollo Bay common crosswalk so locals and visitors can stop off and quickly buy bread, milk and a newspaper, and minimise any inconvenience.

“The speed limit will also be reduced to 40 kilometres to slow traffic through the centre of Apollo Bay.

“It remains vitally important for Council and communities to continue to work together and do what we can to accommodate visitors to the Colac Otway region to help our shire get back on track after a difficult year – it’s great to see so many traders getting behind this project.

“In conjunction with this project, Council has been able to waive all permits fees for businesses across Colac Otway Shire that have temporarily expanded their outdoor dining footprints.

“We’ve seen some innovative outdoor spaces created across the shire to adhere to COVID dining restrictions and it’s exciting that businesses, the community and visitors will benefit from these new outdoor dining spaces.”

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