There have been a couple of great articles in the Hamilton Spectator the last few days talking about some great things happening in Hamilton!
To begin with there was the story about a project they are calling Barton Rises. A group of young professionals are trying to convince property owners to allow local entrepreneurs to use the abandoned store fronts rent free. Some people call these “pop-up shops”.This initiative also includes garbage clean up, refreshing store fronts, business workshops etc.
There was also the article about starting a Community Land Trust to acquire vacant properties that are surplus city properties or those in tax arrears. These properties could become community gardens, parkland, or maybe a community center. Community Land Trusts are more common in the U.S. but there are a few successful ones in Canada, such as Vancouver and Toronto.
There was another article about a small hair salon on Barton Street East. The owner was celebrating her 10th anniversary in business. In fact the article went on to say her salon has become a hub for the neighbourhood.
Stories like these along with all the other goings on, such as a new brownfield development on Victoria St.N., the new Go Station, the new condo projects underway, new shops and restaurants on James St. N. and now along Cannon St., you can’t help but think our city is on the move.
Downtown Hamilton is not the same as it was 5 short years ago. There seems to be more activity downtown than ever before. All these new business and restaurants are creating jobs as well as increasing the tax base. This is all positive. I encourage everyone to take the time to explore downtown Hamilton for the first time, you may be pleasantly surprised!!