BUSINESS appears to be booming in Heathcote. A new gym opened in January, another cafe has recently taken up residence on High St and new luxury accommodation also opened this year. In the coming months, a brewery will open its doors.
This is all fantastic news for the township, which already enjoys the benefits of a strong local tourism industry.
It demonstrates a level of confidence from business owners, indicating they feel they have the support not only of tourists but local residents too.
The proposed childcare centre in Heathcote will also be of benefit. Heathcote has the highest proportion of home-based businesses in Greater Bendigo, which may well be because there are no childcare options available locally.
Once approved, the employment benefits of the childcare centre will be two-fold – it will provide another opportunity for jobs in the township but also give those people who are caring for children the opportunity to re-enter the workforce or work more often.
For those new to running a business or looking for more support, the City of Greater Bendigo and Advance Heathcote have formed a new steering group to seek input from the Heathcote community about the need for a business incubator hub. Have your say by completing the survey before Friday, December 15 on www.surveymonkey.com/r/HeathcoteIncubator
The Heathcote Township Plan, which is currently being developed, will also consider what can be done to support economic development opportunities in the town.
Fibre to the node NBN technology will arrive in Heathcote next year, which will be another boon for business.
High speed internet is also proving you don’t need to be in the same city or town, let alone the same country, to do business.
A report commissioned by the NBN, the Bendigo Lifestylepreneur Report, shows businesses in Greater Bendigo are embracing digital technologies to expand into new markets. This includes a 2.3 per cent increase in local micro businesses (employing one to four people), so an incubator hub may be just what’s needed.
- City of Greater Bendigo Mayor Margaret O'Rourke