With Main Street looking more spruced up these days in Trenton, council wants to ride that momentum, and has implemented a measure to try and spur economic growth in the area.
Coun. Don Hussher proposed that council adopt a plan to redevelop two prominent pieces of land in the downtown area, near the intersection of Main and Hampson streets and the caboose.
“Some businesses are starting to revive again,” said Hussher, referencing renovations on the Quick Pick building (the old Needs location) downtown.
“It’s been brought up many times, and I think it’s time now, with Main Street, to start promoting it, and making this available,” Hussher said.
Hussher suggested removing a guardrail that separates those two particular pieces of land, and promoting them for commercial development with signage indicating they’re available.
“We know what we need now, and I think we have to promote it,” said Hussher, who added that it should be promoted specifically as commercial property, instead of allowing it to be bought and held.
Hussher said promoting the land as open for commercial development is an important detail, since there have been occasions of people just buying land and keeping it, so developers can’t use it for commercial purposes. That could stymie their plan to develop the downtown area commercially.
Hussher recommended council forward the matter to the town’s economic development committee, “to see what we can to do. It’s going to depend on the budget and expenses.”
Mayor Shannon MacInnis was supportive of Hussher’s motion, saying “hopefully things do continue to spruce up, and we can entice people to come to Trenton, with Main Street looking so good.”
At its Dec. 12 meeting, council appointed two members of committees associated with the Regional Enterprise Network (REN).
Council appointed Hussher and Coun. Alex Dove as members of the REN oversight committee.
The REN is a collaborative effort among municipalities in Pictou County, focused on economic strategies that involve local and small businesses.
Municipalities participating in the REN include the towns of Trenton, New Glasgow, Stellarton, Westville, Pictou – and the Municipality of Pictou County.
Council approved a recommendation from the committee of the whole meeting on Nov. 27 to donate $250 to the Pictou County Jr. A Crushers.
The motion was carried, with support of all members of council except Hussher and Coun. VJ Earl.
“I don’t support this decision,” said Hussher. “It’s setting a bad precedent. We haven’t done this in previous years, so I don’t support this.”