The Charlettown Discord

Remember when Deputy Mayor Abel wanted to replace Aurora’s twin city of Leksand Sweeden with Austin Texas?

I posted on that here:

Seeing as Toronto worked out a deal with Austin last year Abel has now set his sights on another city for Aurora to emulate.

This time it is Charlottetown.

In this tweet Mr. Abel questions why Aurora has no hotels when Charlottetown has a dozen:

Yes it is true that Aurora has a larger population than Charlottetown but there are several more factors at play in examining toursim and economics. The following highlight the night and day differences between two municipalities:

Prince Edward Island is Canada’s most in-demand seaside meeting and convention destination.

Tourism represents the Island’s largest service industry export and maintains the status of the largest sector in the province

The Charlottetown Festival itself is headlined by Canada’s most popular and longest-running musical.

Charlottetown’s perennial mainstage production of “Anne of Green Gables” which has charmed generations of theatre-goers.

There are 11 National Historic Sites of Canada located in Charlottetown. Founders Hall, houses an interactive trip through history tracing the development of Canada as a nation.

Charlottetown is a harbourside tourism destination bursting with nightlife, beaches and the best golf in the nation.

Charlottetown boasts over 100 restaurants/nightspots.

Tourists enjoy a new cruise ship terminal opened by the port authority in September 2009.

The Charlottetown Airport is a 10 minute drive (approximately three miles) from the city centre.

Charlottetown’s vibrant creative sector accounts for $60 million in economic activity and directly employs 1,200 people

When presented with these examples Dpt. Mayor Abel turned them around suggesting they are all why & how #Aurora should develop a Community Tourism Plan on a smaller scale.

To which I say bullshit!

Charlottetown has a tourism plan because they are, and have been a destination since before the birth of our nation.

They didn’t start with nothing and suddenly form a committee and plan for ways to attract tourists to flock to their city creating an economy where none existed previously.

The whole “build it and they will come” mentality may work for ball diamonds but hotel convention centres, not so much.

Another key component to Charlottetown’s tourist economy is Downtown Charlottetown Inc. a Business Improvement Area (BIA) established in 2004.

Aurora doesn’t even have a BIA.

Methinks something like a Hotel and Convention Centre would be something arriving out of need, yet just recently the one hotel we had in Aurora just shut its doors and is unlikely to re-open:

If there’s one thing that was confirmed for me from participating in Aurora’s cultural master plan it is that Aurora Cultural Centre has failed in its attempts to “put Aurora on the map in southern Ontario as a cultural hub”: and the signs posted to attract motorists on the 400 series highway are not netting the town any tourists.

I’m all for planning, but if the plan is to pretend to be something we’re not then we need to prepare ourselves for tourists roaming our streets with little to do but laugh and point.


Watts on your mind?

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