METROLINX and CITY OF TORONTO Establish Business Support Table with TABIA and the Eglinton BIA Alliance to Allocate Funding
TORONTO, January 14, 2022: – Metrolinx is excited to share that it has reached a verbal agreement with the City of Toronto, with support from Toronto Association of BIAs (TABIA) as well as the Eglinton BIA Alliance, to establish a joint committee that will continue to address the needs of local businesses during construction.
One million dollars is what remains from the Ontario Government’s $3M pledge provided in early 2020 for additional marketing support and clean up assistance for businesses on Eglinton Avenue. The committee will be working together to determine exactly what the needs of these businesses are and allocate the remaining $1M in funds to assist them as they prepare for the launch of the new Eglinton Line 5, between Mount Dennis and Kennedy Station.
To date, the business support funds have been used to increase:
- window washing, street cleaning, and litter collection along the corridor; and
- funding to Eglinton Avenue BIAs, and one-on-one local business marketing and advertising efforts (i.e. signage, flyers, newsletters, and other promotional materials).
“Metrolinx is pleased to be part of an effort to help support local businesses that are impacted by the construction of much-needed transit projects,” said Kelly Hagan, Vice President, Community Engagement, Metrolinx. “We look forward to collaborating over the next year as Metrolinx prepares for the service launch of Toronto’s newest transit line. The work delivered through this committee will help to build excitement and get businesses ready for opening day.”
The committee will be made up of Metrolinx, City of Toronto Economic Development, Toronto Association of BIAs (TABIA), and the Chair of the Eglinton BIA Alliance. The committee will also include representation from the offices of Councillor Josh Matlow and MPP Robin Martin in advisory roles to provide additional insights from the municipal and provincial prospective respectfully, as needed.
“I want to thank Metrolinx for working with the community and addressing their concerns. It’s been a difficult few years with this project and I’m glad it will be done soon.” stated Robin Martin, Member of Provincial Parliament for Eglinton-Lawrence
“This funding is welcome news for the many businesses along Eglinton, that have struggled through the construction of the Crosstown project,” said Toronto-St. Paul’s Councillor Josh Matlow. “I look forward to working with local store owners through the committee to identify their needs and help ensure they are able to thrive when the new LRT is completed.”
Learnings from the delivery of the Eglinton Crosstown Light Rail (LRT) project will be leveraged to develop a program to support other local businesses and BIAs who find themselves in a high or low impact construction zone of our transit projects. In particular, this committee will be key to forming the business support programming for other major transit projects being built in the City of Toronto.
“TABIA is pleased to be a part of this forward-thinking approach to helping local businesses, landlords and BIAs as they recover from the impacts of years of long-term construction,” said Maureen Sirois, President – Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas. “We look forward to celebrating the completion of the Eglinton Crosstown LRT, and we are mindful that this support initiative will set the road map to help businesses mitigate the very real financial impacts for future transit infrastructure projects.”
“The Eglinton BIA Alliance has a mandate to act in the best interest of businesses along Eglinton. It is from that perspective that we provide this statement. We are pleased to collaborate with the City of Toronto to ensure the successful direction of $1M from Metrolinx to support the interests of our business community. The impact of long-term construction has left irreparable damages on local businesses maneuvering through the devastating effects of COVID–19. The business support table is a timely and appropriate initiative to help facilitate and reattract shoppers, investment, and potential partners back to Eglinton. We welcome the news and hope to see more timely practical efforts, especially with regards to business support funds to help rebuild Eglinton businesses.” Ellé Marks, Chair of the Eglinton BIA Alliance.