This past June 1-6, I traveled to Germany with Kyle Benham, Executive Director of the Burlington Economic Development Corporation (BEDC) for an economic development trip. It was a productive, whirlwind trip.
The purpose of the trip was to participate in the German Water Partnership, a conference of approximately 300 water technology businesses from across Germany and to meet with several Germany head offices with local operations in Burlington.
Canada has been an attractive location for German companies, and Burlington is a good fit with the skill set of our residential base – a fusion of engineering and business management talent.
The BEDC Investment Attraction Strategy has identified advanced manufacturing and water/wastewater technology as a focus area for future investment attraction. Burlington already has a strong economic niche in the water area. It may be surprising to some to learn that Burlington is home to approximately 250 water related businesses, including Anaergia, Kontek, Ecodyne, H20 Innovation, MarCor Purification, and Water Energy Technologies. We are the birthplace of Zenon and a number of spin off companies.
Burlington was the only municipality represented at the conference and we gave presentation about working with cities and regions in Canada.
Here’s a short video that we shared with the conference:
Council Decisions The Big Move and the City of Burlington’s Transportation Master Plan
We have a close relationship with our neighbours – we share an economy, we share a work force, and we share our transportation corridors – the challenges of congestion and gridlock effect us all. Gridlock is one of the most important issues facing us today. This is not just a Greater Toronto Hamilton Area issue, gridlock effects all of Ontario. Traffic congestion effects our quality of life, increases the cost of moving people, goods and services, and has a significant impact on public safety, our health and the environment.
We have seen and heard much in the past several weeks about this topic in conjunction with The Big Move and I have been involved in several recent events with this focus in mind. I have posted a recent blog with more information and video links. Metrolinx has just released their Investment Strategy with their recommendations on funding tools for The Big Move.
As we discuss The Big Move, we are also discussing local transportation. The City is in the process of reviewing Burlington’s Transportation Master Plan. More information is available online. Please see the article further down about a special Encore Inspire Burlington presented in conjunction with the Transportation Master Plan Review. Continue reading →
The pier that was first imagined on our lakefront a decade ago will be opening this month. We will be able to stroll on it, see children reach out to touch its railings, hear music echo along its surface, and watch the sun set from it.
As marvelous as these experiences are to look forward to, I can’t blame Burlington residents for fearing they might never have had them to look back on. There have been delays due to redesign, a construction accident, and lawsuits, some of which are still being dealt with. But thanks to the focus and hard work of the City and its staff, our contractors and funding partners, we will celebrate the Burlington Pier’s opening this month. Continue reading →
There has been a lot of talk and news this week about the Metrolinx Plan to invest in transportation across the Greater Toronto-Hamilton Area and the Investment Strategy Reportreleased on Monday.
It is clear that the challenges of gridlock and congestion are critical to our economic prosperity and quality of life across the GTHA. The Metrolinx Plan is a strategy to improve traffic congestion across the whole GTHA, from Hamilton to Oshawa.
It is proposed that 41% of funds will be raised in the “416” (City of Toronto) and 42% of investment will take place within the 416. 59% of funds will be raised in the “905”, including Burlington, and 58% of funds will be invested in the same area.
How does “The Big Move” impact Burlington?
Traffic congestion is a major impediment to economic development in Burlington. Burlington companies trade in a wide area and do business across the GTHA. Congestion is a major problem.
We have set a target to create 29,000 new jobs overall in Burlington, with 6-7,000 in the Prosperity Corridor along the QEW. To do that we need a mobile workforce and we need to address the problems of gridlock.
What’s in it for us? From the “Next Wave” of projects planned by Metrolinx, Burlington residents and commuters will most directly benefit from: Continue reading →