Media releases

Boosting business in the city, day and night  

25 June 2023

The City of Melbourne will build on the momentum of Melbourne’s booming night-time economy, with a renewed focus on attracting more people in on weekdays to work, shop, dine and spend locally.

At Tuesday’s Council meeting, councillors will consider establishing a City Economy Advisory Committee – focusing on bridging the gap between Melbourne’s 9-to-5 and night-time economies.

If endorsed, the committee would consider a range of initiatives to boost foot traffic and spending in the city across the day.

The new committee would bring together a wide range of views to enhance the city’s appeal as an all-day destination.

Following discussions with the Night-time Economy Advisory Committee, councillors will also consider a new phase of the program – with a series of roundtable discussions with industry experts, other stakeholders and existing committee members.

These in-depth sessions will focus on opportunities to further strengthen Melbourne’s night-time economy, such as live music, late-night business models and city safety.

Since it was formed in June 2021, the Night-time Economy Advisory Committee has played a key role in the city’s resurgence after dark.

Night-time activity continues to soar beyond pre-pandemic levels in Southbank and Docklands, while night-time spending in April accounted for one-third of all spending in the city.

The committee has also provided guidance on a range of initiatives to reignite the night-time economy including:

  • Delivering the Dusk till Dawn Activation Grants program – reigniting Melbourne’s streets after dark with unique events and activations
  • Informing Council’s new premier event Now or Never – which will transform Melbourne with immersive experiences of art, ideas, music and technology in August
  • Developing the Melbourne Economy Snapshot – providing traders with key insights, data and trends to make better-informed business decisions
  • Establishing the Melbourne Money and Midweek Melbourne Money programs – driving weekday spend and visitation to city hospitality businesses
  • Advising on the Project Night Justice Night Safety Summit and Night Safety Charter and Toolkit – improving night-time safety for women and other vulnerable groups

If endorsed, the Night-time Economy Advisory Committee will end on 30 June, with expressions of interest for the new City Economy Advisory Committee to open in the coming weeks.

Quotes attributable to Lord Mayor Sally Capp

“Melbourne’s economy after dark is booming and our night-time traders are reaping the rewards – with night-time spending in the city reaching 112 per cent of pre-pandemic levels.”

“Our Night-time Economy Advisory Committee has played a key role in reigniting Melbourne on weeknights and weekends – and we’ll continue working with industry leaders to attract people into our city at all hours.”

“We know Melbourne’s rhythm has changed, and we want to cement Melbourne as a true 24-hour city – giving all of our traders the opportunity to grow and succeed.”

“Our new City Economy Advisory Committee will look to capitalise on our city’s night-time successes – giving locals and visitors more reasons to come in early and stay late, making a full day and night of it in the city.”

Quotes attributable to City Activation portfolio lead Councillor Roshena Campbell

“We’re delighted that pedestrian activity in key night-time precincts continues to exceed pre-pandemic levels, but we know the city’s 9-to-5 rhythm has not fully recovered – with commuter activity near Flinders Street at 60 per cent compared to 2019.”

“It is vital we do everything we can to ensure our weekday economy rebounds and grows by driving visitation to the city.”

Quotes attributable to Night-time Economy Advisory Committee Chair Penny Miles

“It’s fantastic to see Melbourne consistently buzzing at night – and I’m proud of the role the committee has played in providing expertise and advice to boost the city’s economy after dark.”

“This new approach of in-depth roundtables will ensure the industry can work through some of our biggest challenges and opportunities to continue to build on the spectacular night-time momentum.”

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