Hamilton’s CBD continues to trend in the right way with increased retail spend and foot traffic, and reduced building vacancies and safety concerns from members of the central business community.
That’s the word from Hamilton Central Business Association (HCBA) general manager Vanessa Williams (pictured) who says data from recently-installed pedestrian counters and CBD tenant surveys paints a positive picture.
“There is a buzz around town right now,” she says. “You can see development and investment at every turn which we’re now seeing is validated by this new data.”
HCBA worked alongside Hamilton City Council to install 21 new foot traffic sensors at key locations around the CBD.
The sensors measure the number of people passing underneath the sensors in both directions. During the busiest week so far of 2018, between 19-25 February, counted around 220,000 people, with the slowest week between 1-7 January, counting around 143,000 people.
Williams says retail spend is also on the rise, with the first three quarters of 2018 showing a significant increase compared to 2017, with CBD electronic spending up $20 million during the same time last year.
Food and liquor continues to account for over 40% of the spend followed by other retail and hospitality at 15% and 14% respectively.
“This is also helped by council’s two hours of free parking in the CBD initiative which is also showing a positive impact.”
Williams says this kind of statistical information provides valuable market insight to CBD businesses, particularly those considering a move to the central city.
“By marrying up the financial and pedestrian data we can now see positive trends emerging which gives us good market insights to work with.”