Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

Eatery Fires Up at Mayor; Zambrero Restaurant Owner Colin Dean Says Council Tree Is Killing His Business

Newspaper article The Morning Bulletin (Rockhampton, Australia)

Eatery Fires Up at Mayor; Zambrero Restaurant Owner Colin Dean Says Council Tree Is Killing His Business

Article excerpt

Byline: Steph Allen Stephanie.Allen@capnews.com.au

AS ZAMBRERO owner, Colin Dean, peers up at the tree planted in Denham Street's new garden beds, he points out people walking through and around the redevelopment construction site.

Mr Dean says that the Rockhampton Regional Council's planting of the tree in front of his store's awning sign has caused a major downturn in the foot traffic coming through his Mexican eatery's doors.

Mayor Margaret Strelow said Mr Dean's comments were "incredibly disappointing".

She said the council spoke with him the day before he approached The Morning Bulletin and he had not raised these issues with the council.

"In fact, it was mutually agreed the sign would be relocated to make it more visible," she said.

"The reality of the situation is the demolition of the rotunda has provided more parking spaces than what was previously available, it has opened up the street to make the shops more visible and it also allows for us to provide an appealing alfresco dining area for the restaurants and cafes to utilise.

"Denham Street itself is about to get much busier when it's completed later this month and reopened to two-way traffic."

At the CBD store, Mr Dean says there has been a 60 per cent drop in sales and he has had to let go of nine staff members to keep his store afloat.

"We've closed Sunday because it just isn't worth opening for," he said.

Mr Dean, 51, said he met with Cr Strelow two days before opening his East St eatery and wasn't aware the implementation of garden beds would include the tree.

"The sign cost 20 grand out of my pocket," Mr Dean said outside his restaurant.

"I can't move it down here because that's where my other shop is going to go ... The sign is peeling but the guy can't repair it because he doesn't have access."

Mr Dean said until six to eight weeks ago, the Denham St pathway was closed off, causing less exposure to his business. …

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