Revitalization funding for Alberta Avenue has been a hot topic this summer.
On June 18th, city administration presented a report to executive committee recommending that revitalization funding be reallocated from Alberta Avenue and Jasper Place to Inglewood and Balwin/Belvedere for 2019-2022.
That meant that revitalization funding would end for us here on Alberta Avenue. Many people spoke to the committee that day imploring them not to wind down support.
It was moved that day by Mayor Iveson that:
That Executive Committee recommend to City Council:
- That the selection of the communities of Inglewood and Balwin/Belvedere as the next two neighborhood revitalization opportunity areas for 2019-2022, be approved.
- That Administration work with the Alberta Avenue and Jasper Place communities to develop transition strategies for the revitalization areas and provide a report prior to the 2019-2022 budget process.
We sat down with Thu Truong of T&D Noodle House to get her perspective on the issue.
Q: How long has your business been on Alberta Avenue?
TT: We opened T&D Noodle House in December 2013. We are going into our 5th year of business.
Q: How have you seen the Avenue change?
TT: One of the biggest changes I've seen over the last few years is there are significantly more people walking around. There are more people coming to the neighbourhood to enjoy a stroll down the Avenue, and they are feeling safe doing so!
I have also seen the Facade Program aesthetically make the Avenue look much more inviting and refreshed. The flower pots and the lights make Alberta Avenue look much cleaner and more welcoming. Any change to help improve Alberta Avenue is a good change!
Q: Have you accessed or seen any improvements to your own business as a direct result of the revitalization funding?
TT: I think more people from all over the city have an increased interest in coming to Alberta Avenue. Once they do, they realize the potential the neighbourhood has, and how much it has changed over the last 10 years. With all the festivals, events, coffee shops, retail shops and restaurants - everything you could need is here on the Avenue, really! An increased interest means more foot traffic, and more foot traffic of course means more volume in sales for our business. Plus, the Facade Program really has helped make the Avenue look so beautiful.
Q: Why do you believe the revitalization funding is important to Alberta Ave?
TT: I strongly believe if we stop funding, there will be serious ramifications. We will see a decline in investors to the Avenue, which will result in more derelict buildings. People will eventually sell their homes in the neighbourhood, due to safety issues and crime rates increasing.
In order to continue to improve Alberta Avenue we need to continue funding. We need to give people a reason to walk the beautiful multicultural and diverse Avenue, that is full of authenticity. Continued funding would allow Alberta Avenue to continue to grow as a point of interest in our city, whether it be a fun place to visit on the weekend, a safe and inclusive place to live or a great place to set up shop!