Businesses on Queen Street benefit most from the foot traffic in the heritage district, but their neighbours along the side streets aren’t so lucky, and they pay similar commercial taxes.
So, a potential solution is to improve the landscaping on some of the side streets to make them look as attractive to visitors as Queen Street.
“One of the benefits of the boulevard landscape is it defines the business district,” Coun. Wendy Cheropita told council last week.
Expanding the landscaping will help unify the business district and draw pedestrians to the side streets to visit the businesses located there, she said.
The proposal to expand the landscaping on Queen Street to the side streets has come before council before but was deferred because of budgetary constraints.
Cheropita reintroduced the idea at council on Aug. 29, suggesting the project be considered for the 2023 budget.
The cost of the project could be covered by revenue from the town's new municipal accommodation tax, a staff report said.
Coun. Norm Arsenault objected to the proposal on the grounds that the town had already instructed staff to determine which projects would be covered by the accommodation tax.
He convinced council to ask staff to come up with a new plan for the side streets that does not commit to a specific revenue source for the project.
Evan Loree, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Lake Report