North Shore Times : March 3rd 2015
YOUR PLACE, YOUR PAPER Tuesday, March 3, 2015 2014CANONMEDIAAWARDSCOMMUNITYNEWSPAPEROF THEYEAR Different perspective: Triathlon NZ chief executiveCraig Waugh says the triathlon series has a hugely positive impact on Takapuna. Retailers may pull tri support By SIMON MAUDE THIS YEAR’S Valentines Day didn’t come up roses for many Takapuna businesses. A triathlon series through CBD streets left tills low for many retailers and the local board and business association is ‘‘reassessing’’ long-running support for the event. Rochelle Scoones estimates her weekend takings were down 50 per cent because of the traithlon. Her shop Retrospace ‘‘was left like the Mary Celeste’’, she says. Disruption to her business started on February 13 with road clearance preparations closing-off or limiting vehicle traffic to Hurstmere Rd and several surrounding streets for the event. Hurstmere Rd florist Franca Logan says the closures ‘‘absolutely’’ hurt what was meant to be her busiest Saturday of the year. ‘‘Last Valentines Day we had a queue outside the door – not this year,’’ she says. Logan, who has owned Floirenne Photo: SCOTTIET/OTU MEDIA florists for five years, estimates she lost about $5000 in trade but could have lost more without an impromptu warning. Her triathlete husband gave her a pre-Christmas tip-off about the timetable change, not the organisers, she says. But the Takapuna Beach Busi- ness Association says subcontracted race organiser SMC’s responses to the association’s own queries were ‘‘slow and sporadic’’. Manager Peter White says the business association, which contributed nearly $8000 to the event over the last two years is now ‘‘reassessing’’ its involvement with Tri Takapuna. ‘‘We were most concerned when we learned in late January, that the contractor had applied for a one day event before Valentines Day, and, as such, advised that we would not support such a request.’’ Auckland Council granted SMC a two day consent. Speaking on behalf of SMC, Triathlon NZ chief executive Craig Waugh says he is aware of concerns raised but is also aware of the ‘‘hugely positive impact’’ Tri Takapuna has on the wider community. The event helps foster young ath- Wilted profits: Franca Logan says Tri Takapuna cost her florist business thousands. Previous Tri Takapuna’s were letic talent but non-profit Tri NZ incurs considerable financial costs running it, he says. Some disruptions to local busi- nesses can be lessened but not eliminated when hosting such events, Waugh says. held on Sundays which Logan and other shop owners say caused minimal disruption. ‘‘I am truly not opposed to triathlon events and am very supportive of them . . . it is the timing, place and the business interruption they cause, especially this last one.’’ Devonport-Takapuna Local Board chairman Mike Cohen says Photo: SIMONMAUDE triathlon organisers will ‘‘have a mountain to climb’’ securing future support from his board. ‘‘Our overall position is ‘does it add value to Takapuna’?’’ Council events facilitation man- ager Juliette Jones says as part of its ‘‘debrief process’’ with Tri NZ and SMC, the council will consider ‘‘looking at other venues/ courses’’.
February 27th 2015