Shop assistant Nina Cox at Princess Polly, a new clothes shop in Lismore.
Shop assistant Nina Cox at Princess Polly, a new clothes shop in Lismore. Mireille Merlet-Shaw

Retailers return to CBD

LISMORE'S CBD is rising above the economic doom and gloom, with new figures showing the best occupancy rates in some time.

Latest addition to Keen St, fashion boutique Princess Polly, opened its doors last week and is set for a bright future.

Stocking up to 80 different clothing labels, they have a big online presence and use social media and word of mouth to build a loyal clientele.

Owner Damian Keevers thinks Lismore successfully captures an urban feel without the stress of a big city.

"It's got a certain atmosphere - it's a very laid back, relaxed environment around the CBD, and you can always get a park on Keen St," he said.

Princess Polly will be leading a new trend in Lismore of opening Sundays, Saturday afternoons, and late trading on week nights.

The owner has plenty of ideas for the street: he'd like to see cafes opened up on Sundays for people to come for breakfast and a cuppa, and a "keen for Keen St" campaign.

"A lot of people only get one day off - which is a Sunday - so we want to be able to give them something to do," he said.

"It's a great opportunity to spend time with your family."

The new data shows a vacancy rate of 4% in the CBD, down from 5-6% in March last year.

City Centre manager Katie O'Rourke said the town was holding its own and the future looks promising.

"You hear a lot of doom and gloom stories at the moment and there are definitely struggles being faced by people in this economic climate," she said, "so it's wonderful to see Lismore holding its own."

"We have many different people in our community that love Lismore, and trying to make sure we deliver for all of them is an exciting thing to do," .



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