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December 08, 2017

City of Greater Shepparton Mayor Kim O’Keeffe and Council chief executive Peter Harriott at the new CBD office.

A new central business district office space is aimed at creating a first port of call for Shepparton business people wishing to air their grievances, offer suggestions or canvas ideas.

Greater Shepparton City Council’s Think CBD office space in Tower Arcade, adjacent to Maude St Mall, is designed to be a drop-in centre for residents to share their views.

Hanging on a wall of the space, which is open three days a week, is a blackboard titled ‘‘your ideas board’’ above the question ‘‘what makes Greater Shepparton great?’’.

Speaking at the space recently, Greater Shepparton City Council chief executive Peter Harriott said the office, which was opened at minimal cost to the council, would improve direct contact with the business community.

It was hoped the space could create better communication, better planning outcomes and a better understanding of the issues facing residents, retailers, and ‘‘anyone, really.’’

This was to ensure the council was directing its resources in the right direction, he said.

Mr Harriott described the space as an opportunity for people to visit and discuss their issues.

‘‘It’s understanding first-hand what they’re experiencing,’’ he said.

Mayor Kim O’Keeffe believed listening to CBD stakeholders’ views was ‘‘quite powerful’’ given they experienced and lived the industry daily.

‘‘I think that sort of feedback to us is really important,’’ she said.

‘‘We can engage with them to see what is really happening at the grassroots level.’’

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