So Evelyn you disagree that the current development in the east of Aurora is not having an impact on the downtown core?
Don't get me wrong, the downtown core is great if you need to visit a bank, a doctor or a lawyer. But if you want to buy anything, there is little opportunity. If you live west of Yonge street, you are more apt to drive to Newmarket or Richmond Hill versus the east side of Aurora
Posted by Anonymous to Our Town and Its Business at 27 June 2016 at 07:38
I don't profess to be an expert but I have observed certain features over the years. First being ,
things are never easy in retail business . It would be impossible to make a list all the businesses started closed within months downtown in Aurora.
Before the town had an Economic Development Department, a small planning department handled the task. The planning director devoted her entire professional career to Aurora and enjoyed highest respect in the development industry for fairness and efficiency.
We had conversations about the downtown "problem". The reason that sticks out from all the rest was rents for old inadequate space without convenient parking were too high.
It became apparent, mall rents were too high. People loved the amenities of the mall. They didn't necessarily spend any money there. Malls stopped being built.
The Smart Centre on the east side of town didn't exactly get off to a booming start either. Businesses have come and gone there as well.
I've never seen that parking lot filled. Considering all the paving, trees, ornamental benches that represents considerable investment with no return for years.
Business fails for many reasons. Not least is the assumption by others, every business is a roaring success as long as the doors open.
Business is target for every fund- raising organisation. And doesn't that seem like a roaring trade.Municipal taxes are horrendous. They can't turn around without. a permit and application fees are in the thousands with no guarantee of permission.
Business is built on goodwill. Quarreling with the Municipality is not advisable. They can't complain about the Legion or the Soccer Club competing unfairly for business.
Without an option, they just up and close doors in defeat.
The Chamber of Commerce should be their voice but shows little interest in their problems.
Endless, empty, meaningless, yammering and millions of dollars fed into the maw of out- of -town consultants by a continuing procession of fat cats, elected and appointed at the town hall are a bitter pill to swallow during the struggle to meet a pay-roll and nobody notices until they're gone.
In early days, business was well represented in town and village councils. Farmers were prominent on County Councils. Policies, principles and standards were hammered out to reflect fairness, consistency, practicality and economy.
Taxation was of prime concern. Revenue from property development was recognized as the essential fuel for growth that kept the motor running.
Municipal corporation business was relevant to large and small operations in stores and factories that provided a living for those who made their homes and raised children in the community.
People made the connection.
Nowadays, millions of dollars for wild life reserves, for arts and culture, millions more to provide land for soccer fields for private enterprise to reap profits, additional millions to remove land from development and forfeit revenue, to say nothing of the public sector setting up in competition to the private sector.
Small business are asked to sponsor concerts in the park, hockey teams,soccer teams,baseball teams.Christmas parades, July 1st parades, Easter Eggs hunts and whatever other fun and games come to mind. Not forgetting, Sports Hall of Fame,lucrative advertising magazine and Sport Aurora organization riding in the backs of the taxpayers.
None of it regarded as too great a burden for anyone ptrying to make a living from a business or professional service in Aurora.
The town is currently advertising for citizens to volunteer as Business Ambassadors. Huh.
Last week The Auroran had a photo of Councillor John Abel cutting the ribbon for a new business wearing a shirt and jacket over shorts and sandals with socks.