I hope you are all doing well and enjoying the start of Spring 2021!
I want to take this opportunity to introduce our new 2021/22 DPA Board of Directors to you. Please join me in welcoming Trevor Guerard, President, Christina Conquergood, Vice President, Cheryl Watts, Treasurer, Steve Brown, Secretary, Rebekah Gin, Derrick Webb, Rob Kushner, Brannigan Mosses, Liam Peyton, Helen Goodwin, Brett Turner, and City Liaison Judy Sentes.
A special welcome to Brett Turner and Helen Goodwin for joining the board this year; we look forward to working with you!
Typically, during the Spring, we are preparing to open the Downtown Community Market; however, at this time, we have not received approval from the Provincial or Municipal governments to host this outdoor event. We keep our eye on this very closely, and should the consent be given, we will work as quickly as we can to have the market up and running!
The DPA Team is working on bringing fun and creative covid-19 safety-approved programs to support your business by getting more people into our downtown. Stay tuned to our website, print and social media posts to hear more…
Speaking of getting people downtown, the biggest concern we are hearing from you and agree with are the challenges the new paid parking meters on Main Street, Westminster, Front Street, and Ellis Street are causing your customers. This parking initiative was a City staff recommendation from August 2020 and approved by Council during the 2021 budget deliberations. January 2021, the new paid parking meters were installed and activated.
I have asked the city to provide us with a financial report at year-end to identify the following:
- What were the total project costs, including design, installation, admin, and bylaw, in the first year?
- What were the actual revenues, specific to the metered locations, compared to the projections presented to Council?
- Report feedback from the business community and compare it to the program’s net gain/loss.
We seek transparency and accountability on behalf of our membership, as paid parking directly affects them. We encourage those who lobbied for this to consider all the potential outcomes when making proposals and recommendations. At this time of covid-19 recovery, many of our small businesses need assistance, not additional barriers. When we receive the report, we will share it with you.
Curbside Pick-Up parking is also on our radar to have installed. We are working with the city to determine where these spots will be located along Main Street and the signage indicating 10-minute parking. The location is vital for these spots as we anticipate, post-covid, they will continue to be part of our downtown parking plan. Our first thought is to have these spots close to restaurants to support their food pick-up, as in-door dining may not be allowed for a while. Recognizing that many non-food members also use curbside pick-up will be challenging to choose the best locations. Should you have ideas on locations, please let me know.
As well, we are working with the city on how our members can set up parking validation on the Passport Parking app and monitoring the placement of the pay machines and signage. I will provide details on how to set up parking validation once we have the details.
Thanks for taking the time to read my note, and please let me know how we can support and assist your business.
Results matter! The DPA will continue to build community by taking an active leadership role, producing meaningful results, and passionately advocating for the downtown business community.
Office: (250) 493-8540
Cell: (250) 328-5959