Fremantle’s new business improvement district or BID

Today I attended a very interesting talk on the Fremantle business improvement district otherwise known as the BID. The talk was by David West who has help put together BIDs around the world and has been advising Fremantle on reviving our struggling retail and our BID.

The Fremantle BID will be the first fully fledged BID in WA in which Fremantle businesses will be given the power and resources to improve the conditions for business in Fremantle.

David showed how successful BIDs round the world focus on four key areas – like a shopping centre but for main streets:

1. Management including cleaning, security and customer service

2. Marketing the city as a destination

3.Tenancy mix including lease renewals match to market research, performance monitoring, and perhaps making vacancies into pop up shops. Ie how do we ensure we are more than a

4. Capital works investment such lighting of buildings, bins, banners etc.

Research showed that the preferred priorities of the priorities for the Freo BID were

  • Security
  • Retail marketing
  • Clean and attractive CBD
  • Consistent branding.

I think BID model will enable some exciting innovation in Fremantle retailing from those who care know retailing best – the retailers. New York, for example, already has 65 BIDs and BIDs on average five times the amount levied.

As a closing comment, I noticed a slogan for a BID area in the UK that I thought rang true for retail in Fremantle as well. It was “Anywhere else is just shopping”

About Mayor of Fremantle Brad Pettitt's blog
City of Fremantle Mayor

7 Responses to Fremantle’s new business improvement district or BID

  1. janinemarshall says:

    Sounds great and I’m sure Freo will benefit heaps from it because the potential is already there.
    I like that slogan “Anywhere else is just shopping”, because I feel that shopping should be much more than just walking into a store, purchasing something and then walking out. It should be an awesome experience with a good atmosphere from the very moment a customer parks the car. Everybody loves to be made to feel good, and everybody loves a good experience, thats why they keep going back for more. On the down side, everybody remembers a bad experience and thats why excellent management, value for money quality products, the right staff and very important brand experience plays a key part.
    The pressures to meet performance standards in this day and age are high, this is a very challenging economic environment for retailers and consumers as we are all aware of, especially when it comes to shortages of resources and parting with money, customers are now more than ever wanting to get their moneys worth. Its not just about selling a product though, but selling the company/business and also the city, so I think this will be a wonderful opportunity for Fremantle to get some key businesses on board the BID wagon and still give the customer that awesome ” shopping experience”.

  2. freoview says:

    BID is good. Less red tape and more direct input from traders. Where else in the world do they have a shopping street like High Street, that ends in a beach! Anywhere else is just boring shopping!

    Roel Loopers

  3. Roger Garwood says:

    Brad, Fremantle people have been saying for several years now, particularly on your watch, that we want safe and clean streets and a variety of retail outlets. And you decide that it is necessary to believe an expert. Public opinion also has value yet when it comes to your mainstream interest, whereby you are trying sell the notion of high rise development, you studiously ignore the public.

    • Roger. Not sure this is on topic really. But to bring it back I think a BID will give us safer and cleaner streets and renewed retail and all with local businesses in the drivers seat. A49 will also help with more people living and working in Freo. cheers, Brad

  4. Suz Blake says:

    How about “Hello Freo”. This BID is exciting. Let’s make Freo come alive with colour and art – heaps of it! That’s what Freo has a reputation for – that artsy, cruisy vibe. Slow people down and they will spend more time and more money. I was recently in Sydney and they’ve managed to turn a dismal area underneath a big ugly causeway bridge into a huge kids playground flanked by restaurants, shops and attractions at Darling Harbour. I know Freo isn’t Sydney – but we do have our fair share of ugly infrastructure (Myer building perhaps)? that could be softened and enhanced by making the environment more interactive, and literally merging play with shopping/eating. I had a go in the playground and I didn’t even have kids with me! Water fountains (yes to play in again!) on the street level were great too. I know Freo has the playground on the Esplanade, but what about a few more? Or what about sculptures in Freo? Have you seen the Fish and Chip shop in Cottesloe absolutely BURSTING with people on a night that the Sculptures by the Sea is on? Freo needs more art (professional and community created), more interaction, more effort, more fun, more places to tag yourself on Facebook :)

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