“I was interested in this article, written by Nicolas Perpitch for ABC News, it seems that 2018 marks the start of a new beginning for Perth hospitality venues.
With the new Perth Stadium set to increase traffic to businesses in the surrounding areas, the hard-working hospitality operators in Perth are looking forward to a brighter future in 2018!
Hospitality has always been a great indicator of the Perth economic environment. With WA on the way up again, the hospitality sector is a perfect barometer for this.
Let’s all get behind the cause and welcome the positive changes in our beautiful city. 2018: A year of promise.” – Jim Goodwin
* * *
When tens of thousands of fans come streaming out of the new Perth Stadium on event days, there will be an army of local business owners waiting to welcome them with open arms.
Up to 14,000 people are expected to walk across the Matagarup pedestrian bridge — when it is finally opened in May — over the Swan River from the stadium and arrive on the East Perth foreshore.
Rose Deli owner Ursula Rose will be ready for them. She will be happy if even a fraction of them come in for a coffee or a bite to eat.
“It doesn’t mean everyone is going to make a day of it in East Perth, but gosh, even if it’s 5 percent, that’s a hell of a lot of people,” Ms Rose said.
“We think it’ll be terrific for the area.”
Ms Rose was not the only one in East Perth expecting a big boost from the stadium.
The Royal on the Waterfront, on the Claisebrook inlet, is also planning to put on more staff and adapt its menu for hungry sports and music fans.
“We’re going to expect a lot of people in East Perth … it’s going to benefit all the local businesses here quite significantly,” manager Anoop Nair said.
The pub will be stocking extra beer and looking for other ways to capitalise on the expected crowds.
“There’s lots of different options, maybe a pop-up bar outside, maybe a barbecue outside. There’s plenty of opportunity there for us,” Mr Nair said.
But not all those 14,000 people will be streaming through East Perth.
In fact, shuttle buses will be waiting for many, if not most, of those fans at the bottom of a ramp on the East Perth side of the bridge — which is expected to open in May — to whisk them straight to the CBD.
Fear of drunken fans
For anyone who wants to stay in the area, stairs from the bridge will lead towards Claisebrook Cove.
But the Public Transport Authority has added a gate at the top of those stairs “at the request of some local residents during early stakeholder engagement”.
That request came from East Perth Community Safety Group. But it has some local businesses extremely worried that if the gate is closed, they will miss out on a lot of extra customers.
The group’s chairman Jeff Broun said that was not the intention, rather it was to help direct people towards the shuttle buses so they would not get confused.
PTA spokesman David Hynes said, “at this stage, the gate will be open on game days, but it gives us the flexibility to close it should we require it for crowd management”.
“We have been working hard to find the right balance between the needs of local residents, businesses and those of Optus Stadium patrons,” Mr Hynes said.
“We firmly believe we have found the best solution for all parties.
“It is important to note the bridge will be open to the public at all times.”
Local resident Bill MacGillivray is worried about drunken fans in the streets.
“I think it’s going to be chock-a-block and bit horrendous here for people. I don’t think it’s really been thought out,” he said.
The City of Perth is improving lighting and installing extra CCTV cameras in the area, and police will patrol on bicycles.
Victoria Park anticipating boost
Across the river in Victoria Park, pubs, restaurants and cafes are also trying to make the most of the new stadium.
Nick Duncan, owner of the Broken Hill Hotel, said fans needed easy parking access.
“Hopefully, the council is listening to our pleas to make it free parking on game day, so that we can fill up all the streets and it’s a nice 16, 17 minute walk to the ground from here, and they can have a couple of beers and be safe to drive home,” Mr Duncan said
The Town of Victoria Park said it already had some free parking and was looking at other options.
The $1.6 billion stadium is due to open in January.