MidCoast Council's Paul De Szell outlines the future of the Vibrant Spaces initiative

The parklet on Victoria Street in Taree formed part of the Vibrant Spaces intiative.
The parklet on Victoria Street in Taree formed part of the Vibrant Spaces intiative.

MidCoast Council will  encourage more businesses in the region to take part in the Vibrant Spaces initiative. 

This move follows a breakfast meeting hosted by Taree Business Chamber earlier in July which outlined how the initiative continues to be embraced by the community.

MidCoast Council’s community spaces and services director Paul De Szell (who has been at the forefront of the initiative) and economic development coordinator Robyn Brennan spoke at the meeting.

Mr De Szell said the presentation was about “reactivating the momentum” and to showcase why Taree is the home of Vibrant Spaces.

MidCoast Council's community spaces and services director Paul De Szell spoke at Taree Business Chamber's breakfast meeting.

MidCoast Council's community spaces and services director Paul De Szell spoke at Taree Business Chamber's breakfast meeting.

“Council is actively encouraging business operators in CBD areas to take advantage of the initiative, to think creatively about how best to tell the story of their business while creating an environment to draw people in,” Mr De Szell said.

Taree Business Chamber president John Stevens said it was one of the most successful meeting they have had.

“Members were pleased they could speak with the new general manager (Adrian Panuccio), mayor (David West), Paul and Robyn,” Mr Stevens said.

“They were happy to discuss any matters.”

Mr Stevens said members and local businesses will continue to workshop ideas with council’s economic development team.

We also need businesses working together to build momentum.

Paul De Szell, MidCoast Council's community spaces and services director

Mr De Szell added the removal of fees associated with using footpath space has received positive feedback and the continued success of the initiative will be on the back of the cooperation between council and businesses. 

“We also need businesses working together to build momentum,” Mr De Szell said.

The concept was introduced under the former Greater Taree City Council and implemented to the Great Lakes and Gloucester post amalgamation.

Mr De Szell said as each area has a “unique character”, the concept has been developed differently. 

This bike rack is one of many Vibrant Spaces displays along Victoria Street, Taree.

This bike rack is one of many Vibrant Spaces displays along Victoria Street, Taree.

“A recent presentation to the Forster Tuncurry Business Chamber has seen a definite increase in interest by businesses with a direct spike in registrations,” Mr De Szell said.

“Council has also received more inquires about busking in places like Tea Gardens and Harrington since the expansion of Vibrant Spaces which is great for creating atmosphere and character in our region.”

Businesses are encouraged to find out more or register for Vibrant Spaces via MidCoast Council’s website.