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Wanted: A pacemaker for the heart of the city

Wanted: A pacemaker for the heart of the city
Once again, the Steyr town square is to be revitalized.

At yesterday’s municipal council meeting, a motion to set up a working group on “Economic Development in Steyr’s Old Town and City Center” was unanimously approved. The idea is not new and cannot be dismissed. There have been numerous attempts to do this in recent years. What was new this time, however, was that the motion was submitted by the Steyr FP.

The loss of the last grocery store (Billa, note) on the town square was a sticking point, said Vice Mayor Helmut Zöttl (FP): “The situation is precarious, we have to bring everyone to the table.” In addition, there is a high rate of vacant apartments in the city center. However, the downward spiral cannot be due to the fact that cars are driving into the center. This was confirmed by party colleague City Councilor Evelyn Kattnigg: “Let’s not talk about a car-free town square. People don’t want to carry their shopping bags for ten minutes.”

The other factions were in favor of the motion, but not on the FP line. City Councilor Christian Baumgarten (SP) recalled two round tables on the topic in 2023, but with the exception of politicians, these were sparsely attended. “We held 183 events in the area around the city center last year, that’s not nothing.” Politics can only help, business people, landlords and landlords must take action.

The city is not entirely innocent, countered city councilor Judith Ringer (VP): “The shopping center near the city on Tabor has led to people moving away, and the fees for beer gardens have been increased.”

According to Neos councillor Pit Freisais, a holistic concept is lacking: “There is only a patchwork, no courage, just look at the traffic on the town square.” Green councillor Kurt Prack agreed and said that the town square belongs to all Steyr residents, not just business people: “Let’s see how other cities do it better.” Ruth Pohlhammer (Greens) spoke of a good idea from the FP: “But starting with bans on thinking is not good.” Rosa Hieß (SP) added: “Opening times are important.” At the end, Mayor Markus Vogl (SP) warned that the town square is the heart of Steyr, which sets the pulse: “We have to work together. It is more than just a trading place.”

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