Town, local partners support economic restart with downtown improvements

The Town of Ladysmith and our generous community partners are boosting the vibrancy of the downtown core by investing in business-friendly improvements that will help kick-start the local economy during the phased re-opening from COVID-19.

Ladysmith Council has approved up to $15,000 from the unspent Grant-in-Aid budget to be invested in new concrete patio seating along First Avenue between Symonds and Gatacre Street.

The new patio seating in the downtown will be complemented by new lighting hanging above the street, and in the trees, adding to our heritage downtown’s unique sense of place, aesthetics and overall shopping and dining experience.

These improvements are being made possible also thanks to important contributions from local organizations, businesses and individuals.

“Downtown is often referred to as the ‘living room of our community’ and the seating and lighting projects are a wonderful opportunity to provide more public spaces to connect, gather at a safe distance, enjoy a bite to eat, or rest after a bit of shopping,” said Mayor Aaron Stone.

“Through the generosity of our local service groups and business owners we are delivering value far above and long beyond the initial investment and contributing to the long-term vibrancy and vitality of downtown.”

Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham Oyster Bay is donating 30 sets of the Edison-style LED light bulbs that will hang above the Town’s main street – creating an even more welcoming streetscape to enjoy while exploring downtown.

“Masterbuilt Hotels has a long history of supporting the communities in which we operate hotels. Microtel by Wyndham Oyster Bay is proud to donate the overhead lights for downtown Ladysmith, which will further enhance Canada’s 2017 Great Street, and provide a unique and memorable environment for both locals and visitors,” said Chad Toronchuk, general manager, Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham Oyster Bay.

“We believe a rising tide floats all boats, and by enhancing the experience downtown we will attract more visitors and residents, helping in the economic recovery efforts in our town.”

Ladysmith Kinsmen have generously donated funds to purchase six of the patio sets for the area at Gatacre Street and First Avenue, while Old town Bakery is also contributing funds for one table.

Some of these patio sets will be designed for accessibility, and the configuration will meet physical distancing recommendations from public health authorities.

Uforik Computers is donating interactive lighting and colourful umbrellas to compliment the patio sets.

Watch the Town’s social media pages for new donation announcements.

Ladysmith Council also extends a special thank you to Ladysmith Festival of Lights volunteers who in recent days have been stringing the summer lights in trees downtown.

The Ladysmith Chamber of Commerce and Ladysmith Downtown Business Association are exploring opportunities for a shop local/regional campaign and providing updates through the newly-launched Invest Ladysmith and Tourism Ladysmith.

In order to help fund these downtown projects, the Town has applied for a new Island Coastal Economic Trust (ICET) small grant program supporting solutions to help quickly restart business and industry impacted by COVID-19.

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