The fate of the Downtown Association will be determined Tuesday evening once voting by downtown businesses is complete, and it’s not looking good for the Business Improvement Association.
Regardless how the vote turns out however, one thing is certain. The Downtown needs a lot of attention from the city. That’s the consensus of council Monday night after hearing a presentation from local lawyer, Joe Bisceglia.
Business and property owners in the downtown core have until 5pm Tuesday to cast their vote on whether the Downtown Association (formerly known as the Queenstown Association) disbanded.
A rift between business owners and the association has been on-going for the last several months.
Led by Dominic Ruscio, president of Domenic Holdings Ltd., who wants to see the bylaw that allows the Downtown Association to operate repelled. The association charges large fees for businesses and many argue they don’t get a good return on their investment.
Bisceglia, who was appearing before council as a business and property owner in the downtown hopes a restructured levy would encourage more businesses in the downtown core to join the business improvement association or as a catalyst for a brand new association.
Most of the complaints about the Downtown Association from members centers around lack of vision for the downtown area and the decline of the downtown area overall, in other words, the Downtown Association has failed to help revitalize the downtown.
Bisceglia presented council with a presentation with several suggestions including looking at changing traffic patterns in the downtown including making the downtown area two way.