Meeting With Naas Traders – Naas Town Revival

James Lawless Naas TradersRecently I held a very productive meeting with a group of Naas traders during which I outlined that the revival of the town centre is one of my top priorities if elected to the council in May 2014

I came to live in Naas when it was a thriving town and as the county town I want to see it thrive again. Growing up above a shop myself, ​ ​I am very familiar with the retail environment and I know footfall is the lifeblood of any high street business. There are a variety of issues from planning issues to commercial rates to parking to an anchor tenant but I have always believed ‘where there is a will there is a way’ and I am determined to get stuck into these issues if I am elected this May.

One leading factor in the decline of Naas town was the focus on out-of-town retail development​ in successive town development plans over the past 15 years. We’re now witnessing the implications of these bad planning decisions with shop closures taking place in the town centre on a regular basis. Sitting councillors must accept their share of responsibility in making these bad decisions.

In 2006 the county town was rated the number one place to shop, stay & dine, sadly a 2014 REI survey ranked it at only 74th. The difficulties are well documented, what is needed is a plan for the future.

I met with a number of local traders last week, it follows from many one-to-one meetings I have been having over the past year. Since I got into local politics I believe the first step is listening and understanding the problems before trying to solve them and that is what I have been doing all along.

I recently ​founded the very successful Sallins Business Association ​​.​ A new group for Naas on similar lines would be a positive initiative for the revitalisation of Naas town centre.

The Sallins Business Association has gone from strength to strength with over 60 businesses now signed up and a really strong networking, trading and lobby bloc has been created. It gives voice and an internal market to the businesses in Sallins and I see no reason why we could not apply the same approach to Naas and its traders.

One Reply to “Meeting With Naas Traders – Naas Town Revival”

  1. Esther O'Keeffe

    Hello James,
    I have read your latest newsletter and of course you are still out there making everyone aware that you are not a man who gives up on a project. I have never been at a voting count but I intend being at the upcoming one. I shall enjoy seeing you being you carried shoulder high. Its young blood we need now.
    I finished my computer applications course today James, having sat my last module- Data Base. For a lady who is the wrong side of 60 I found that I enjoyed the challenge, and everything worked out for me. I got my Provisional results for the Powerpoint, and the Excell exam, and they earned me a Distinction. I shall receive the Provisional result of today’s exam in about 2 weeks.

    The lovely Tutor Stephanie Bagnall from Newbridge gave me back the confidence to believe in myself again, after my ordeal last year. She was overcome when I quietly gave her a Thank You card with €10 and wrote on it to buy herself a cup of coffee and a sticky bun.

    Keep well,
    It wont be long now.


    Esther O’Keeffe.

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