Survey ‘proof’ limits on pop-ups needed

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Jakeb WaddellBroome Advertiser
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Broome's first night markets have been deemed a raging success.
Camera IconBroome's first night markets have been deemed a raging success.

Businesses have said an online poll that supports pop-up traders and food vans is evidence their popularity would affect established businesses and controls on their opening hours and locations should be introduced.

The Broome Advertiser posted a poll to its Facebook page last fortnight asking readers if they believed mobile traders were a good idea.

The survey came after the Shire of Broome said it was considering making changes to its trading in public places policy, which prohibits mobile traders from operating within 300m of a competing permanent business.

The result of the poll was an overwhelming 79 per cent “yes” vote, with just 78 of 372 people saying “no”.

Broome real estate agent Tony Hutchinson said he was not surprised by the outcome but a balance needed to be found.

“Food vans and pop-up traders work best when limited to special occasions like markets and other events, rather than as a permanent feature where they may become overdone,” he said.

“They should be limited to locations out of the CBD, a long way from permanent businesses.”

Broome Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Peter Taylor said while the chamber recognised the contribution mobile traders could make to the vibrancy of the town, the lack of clarity from the Shire had caused concern to many of its members.

“This concern has been exacerbated as the change in policy has not been foreshadowed, nor have compelling reasons been effectively explained,” he said.

However, SnittySims Schnitzel Kitchen owner Simon Lindberg, who operates on Port Drive, said the poll showed people were after cheaper meals.

“Food vans can offer better value meals for families who cannot afford to pay the high prices of resorts and restaurants,” he said.

“If a food van wants to operate and follow all the catering legislation and Shire requirements, they should be given the chance to trade wherever they want.”

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