In many ways Le Village and area is already the hub of arts and culture in Cornwall – from the Port Movie Theatre, to a photography studio, to La Maison, to a bilingual newspaper, to Aultsville Theatre, Strung Out Guitars, tattoo shops and more. It was also the home of Cafe Connectionz and some independently owned book stores too.
Le Village Business Improvement Area had created a Strategic Plan in 2011. The plan outlined the need for beautification of the commercial district, improved parking, communications, and community partnerships. Heart of the City also has programs to help landowners in upgrading and renovating commercial properties.
There have been a few improvements to the beautification of the district, however over the past few years more businesses have also had to close their doors.
I don’t think businesses in Le Village receive the same support or get the same visibility as down town businesses. Perhaps the downtown Cornwall BIA is better organized, or perhaps there is a stigma that effects the east-end of Cornwall, or a mix of both. It is a complex issue.
Moving forward one strategy to better improve Le Village could be to promote it as the ‘arts district of Cornwall’. With the building of condos the demographic is slowly changing. With a possible University coming to Nav Canada the demographic of the east end could drastically change. A re-branding exercise would be a sound marketing move at this time. This alone will not revitalize the area, but it would be an important step for a long term strategy.
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