April 29, 2013 - 4:02 PM
A call for action was heard at the Downtown Revitalization Committee meeting this week.
City staff recommend moving on plans as fast as possible. The committee is in charge of finding improvements for Main Street, Martin Street and other avenues. Everything from providing grants to improving store facades to street construction is being covered.
Development director Anthony Haddad said as soon as the short-term immediate plans get approved council should endorse them.
"So the plan doesn't get stale."
Coun. John Vassilaki said any improvements will still be a surprise for some property owners. Most of the turnout at the public information meetings was made up of citizens - not owners.
Vassilaki said the city or the Downtown Penticton Association needs to get the word out.
"They have no clue what's going to happen," he said. "The majority of those paying the bills never came out," he said to downtown revite meetings.
He was told by city officials that is exactly what is happening. The association will visit or call every property owner it can to let them know what improvements are happening and how they can participate.
Coun. Helena Konanz said things also need to cost less and move faster.
Property owners who improve or buy signs for store fronts need tax relief. And some red tape needs cutting. When a business owner files a request for improvement help it can take months before a reply is sent back. In the mean time some business owners have spent $500 to $1,000 for an engineer to study their facade.
To contact a reporter for this story, email Shannon Quesnel at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 250-488-3065.
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013