Riccarton-Wigram Community board chairperson Mike Mora said he felt for businesses in the area around the Riccarton bus exchange.
Art of Sewing owner Kathy Ryder spitting and swearing teenagers were deterring customers from going to her shop.
She had decided not to renew her lease after an increase in youth crime since the bus exchange opened late last year. People often came into her shop and complained about the behaviour outside.
The community board was trying to make the area less attractive for people to congregate in, Mora said.
"We know they [businesses] are suffering and struggling but it's still a work in progress."
"Police are under resourced, so the expectation of having a permanent police presence in that area would be a big, big ask," he said.