I am a Business Owner or Organisation

View over Soldiers Hill from Town Hall tower in 1872 (William Bardwell, State Library of Victoria)

Chinese Quarter Ballarat with Circus tent and Joss House, Ebenezer & David Syme (Source: State Library of Victoria)

logoHUL Toolkit

I am a Business Owner or Organisation

These resources are designed to help you understand Ballarat and its community and economy. They are designed to provide context for specific sites within the city, as well as the cultural significance of different industries and activities. Use these tools to identify and shape business opportunities that will make a connection with Ballarat. 


Understand and leverage the city's story and character

  • Find guidelines and resources that outline innovative ways for people to engage with your business leveraging our city's unique stories in the Storytellers' Network toolkit 
  • Learn how to research your home’s history with our research guide and find out what our heritage studies tell you about Ballarat’s historic areas in the Ballarat Heritage Database (searchable by property)
  • Read the stories and memories of people in the Ballarat community and see their link to places in Ballarat and around the world on The Memory Atlas  
  • Get the overview of Ballarat’s history, with a timeline spanning pre-contact times to the present day 
  • Explore our city with the self-guided, historic walking tours outlined on Ballarat Revealed
  • Uncover local Indigenous perspectives of the gold rush through Hidden Histories: The Wadawurrung People 
  • Compare historic and present-day Ballarat through the Cityscapes and Artscapes through time tools
  • Survey Ballarat’s musical heritage with the interactive Songways Music Map  
  • Hear stories of unique characters and events that shaped Ballarat in the Tales from Rat City podcast series
  • TimeCapsule Ballarat provides a continuously evolving and interactive map of places valued and remembered in Ballarat

You can find out more about Ballarat and research your own history with our city’s local history groups and organisations 


Review Council's priorities

  • The Today, Tomorrow, Together: The Ballarat Strategy outlines the community’s vision for the future and guides Council’s approaches to delivering it 
  • The other key driver for developing Ballarat’s future is the Creative City Strategy, which provides key priorities and areas of focus for fostering the creative life of the city and its economy
  • The Council Plan outlines the Ballarat City Council’s key priorities for the city
  • The Economic Program outlines the economic priorities for the City of Ballarat and the key initiatives that will guide economic development in the city.
  • Ballarat locals told us that our city’s unique character and heritage was of critical importance to the future of their city and their voice guided the city’s heritage plan. This plan guides how we best leverage, safeguard and celebrate our city’s heritage.
  • A series of community-led local area plans and master plans [link to MySay archive – FORTHCOMING] guide the future of Ballarat’s CBD, local areas and townships
  • Making Ballarat Central is Council’s long-term plan for growth and development in Ballarat’s historic CBD.

Find more Ballarat plans and policies


Identify local people's values

  • The Ballarat Imagine community consultation uncovered what the community loves, values and imagines for the future of Ballarat. Read what you said
  • Uncover community values for specific areas around our city through consultation summaries [link to MySay archive – FORTHCOMING] and community engagement reports [link to collection online – FORTHCOMING]


Engage local people

Depending on the size of your project, community consultation and participation may enhance your likelihood of success. For enquiries, contact the Economic Development team on 5320 5500 or email economicdevelopment@ballarat.vic.gov.au for further information.


Get involved

  • Contact the Business Concierge service, who can help you navigating Council’s permits system, facilitate investment opportunities and anything else related to starting a business in Ballarat
  • Consider using the CBD Regeneration Outreach Service, a tailored programme to help private and commercial heritage property owners and businesses who want to restore historic properties and reinstate lost heritage features on buildings in the city’s CBD. Contact the City of Ballarat’s Heritage Advisory Service directly on heritage@ballarat.vic.gov.au or call +61 3 5320 5500.  You may also be eligible for a grant through the Ballarat Heritage Restoration FundContact the fund on 9656 9870. 
  • Join the entrepreneurial community through Start-up Ballarat and Commerce Ballarat’s workshops and networking events
  • Consider applying for one of Council’s grants to support your idea