What would you like to see filling the empty storefronts in the Oak Bay Village? The Oak Bay Business Improvement Association wants to know.
While the village boasts a diverse array of thriving businesses, several addresses have been vacant for some time, notes Liz Smith, president of the Oak Bay BIA.
As a way of spurring on rental, the BIA is seeking feedback from residents and local shoppers as to what they’d like to see, whether it’s another restaurant, a clothing store or something completely different.
“It’s just a shout-out to people to see what they’d like to see in these spaces in the village. Our tagline is ‘Everything you want, all in one place,’ so what else does the public want?” Smith asks.
Armed with that information, the BIA will be in a position to contact potential businesses about setting up shop in an area that would welcome their addition, Smith says.
“We would like to know from the community what they would like to see there,” Smith says. “I think the community should be involved.”
As the owner of Athlone Travel, Smith can attest to the business climate in Oak Bay, she says.
“Next year is our 30th year and it’s a great place to have a business.”
While the possibilities are many for the spaces, which include the former Country Life fashion location in the heart of Oak Bay Avenue, “it does have to be something that lends itself to a village environment.”
The public is invited to email their thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org or stop by the travel office in Athlone Court.
“It would be really nice to have the information by the new year,” she says.
A banner for your garden
If you’d like a piece of Oak Bay village history to decorate your home or garden, the Oak Bay Business Improvement Association is selling former spring and summer banners for $10 each.
The long-lasting banners, which had hung from the lamp standards in previous seasons, depict colourful images like tulips and whales. Business names on the bottom can be easily removed.
Contact Liz Smith at Athlone Travel for more information.