Council awards $530,000 to local community groups and small businesses during COVID-19
The City of Parramatta is proud to have provided more than 100 small businesses and community groups across the LGA with over half a million dollars in grants as part of Council’s response to the COVID-19 crisis. Council awarded 36 local not-for-profit and social enterprises with Community Resilience Grants, totalling just over $380,000, to help them adapt and diversify during the COVID-19 pandemic. An additional $150,000 was provided to set up the new Small Business COVID-19 Response Grant program, which has aided 85 businesses to pivot, expand, or digitise their operations amid public health restrictions.
These local community organisations and small businesses contribute so much to our City and community, and I am glad we have been able to give back to them and provide support when they needed it most.
One of the recipients of a $20,000 Community Resilience Grant was the Hindu Council of Australia, whom I visited recently. Check out the video below to find out more about the work that they do, and how the funding from the grant helped them continue providing their services to vulnerable members of our community throughout COVID-19.
Community Resilience Grant - Hindu Council of Australia
Earlier this week, I was excited to attend City of Parramatta’s launch of the ‘Melrose Park: Smart Planning for Climate Responsive Neighbourhoods’ project. More than 70 state-of-the-art environmental sensors are installed in Melrose Park, a 25-hectare development site and growing suburb in our City. These sensors will be used to monitor and collect data on local conditions – including temperature, humidity, air quality, noise and stormwater – as the area is redeveloped. The information gathered will be analysed and used to understand the impacts of development on the surrounds, improve the area’s liveability in the long term, and inform future planning.
The $1.142 million project, which has been delivered in partnership with property developer PAYCE and the University of Technology Sydney (UTS), received a $571,000 grant from the Australian Government as part of the Smart Cities and Suburbs Program. Other project partners include M Projects, The Urban Institute and ESRI Australia. I am very proud that the City of Parramatta is a leading partner on this cutting-edge initiative, and the first Council in Australia to launch a project of this kind. This technology will allow us to make more informed decisions in the planning of future suburbs, and continue making Parramatta a place that people want to live, work, and invest in.
Constitution Hill Shopping Village Open Week 26 – 31 October
I am looking forward to attending the Constitution Hill Shopping Village Open Week next week, to celebrate the $130,000 upgrade to the local shops. The upgrades were part of Council’s Better Neighbourhoods Program, and include new bench seating, gardens, trees and car parking bollards. I encourage you to come and check out the upgrades and enjoy Council’s Open Week program.
There will be lots on offer during Open Week, including free children’s workshops, online story time sessions, Halloween-themed competitions, activities, and giveaways at Constitution Hill Library, as well as a range of special offers from the businesses at Constitution Hill Shopping Village.
I encourage you to show your support for the local businesses at Constitution Hill Shopping Village, and explore the new-look precinct during Open Week.
‘Eat Street’ parking now free to customers
I am pleased that customers who dine at restaurants along Parramatta’s famous ‘Eat Street’ will now get to park for free! Under this new initiative to support local businesses, Council will cover the cost of parking for anyone who spends $20 or more at participating Church Street venues between 6pm and 3am on Thursday, Friday or Saturday nights. This offer will remain in place until 31 January 2021.
To claim this offer, all you need to do is park at Council’s Riverbank or Eat Street carparks on an eligible evening, and collect a free parking ticket when you pay your bill. Our small businesses keep our City alive, and we all know 2020 has been a difficult year for many in our local area – particularly on ‘Eat Street’. Despite the challenges, most of these businesses are still open and they need our support. I encourage you to get out and enjoy the warmer weather by visiting the amazing café’s, restaurants, and bars along ‘Eat Street’.