Plan for business grants passed

Adelaide Metcalfe has its first-ever community improvement plan to use grants in public areas and give local businesses a financial boost.

There were no public comments at the open house in September nor at the public meeting Oct. 3, so it was up to consultant Jesse McPhail from Republic Urbanism to reach out to businesses and come up with a plan for council to pass.

He used five guiding principals of ‘to’ not ‘through,’ attainable and inclusive, reinforcing roots, active and healthy, and moving together through accessibility.

There are seven financial incentive programs that include matching grants of up to a few thousand dollars aimed at private businesses that can be reimbursed 50 percent of investments they make.

The categories include countryside for agri-business or tourism; site beautification for things like landscaping; facades and signage; accessibility upgrades; additional residential unit to add housing in buildings already here; attainable housing of up to four units; and business expansion.

Municipal leadership initiatives are in four categories: wayfinding for things like signs and branding; Centre Road urbanization to guide grwoth with an eye on pedestrians, bikes, and coordinating with Strathroy-Caradoc; public amenities like Kerwood Park improvements; and mobility safety for making it safer to walk and bike the Township’s communities.

Chris Gareau, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Middlesex Banner