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Old East Village BIA COVID-19 Update

As we move into week three of these unprecedented times, we continue to search for ways to make things easier to navigate for businesses. While things have been difficult, Old East Village businesses continue to adapt and find new ways to access customers if able. At the BIA, we have been doing everything we can to assist in minimizing impacts but we welcome any feedback, suggestions or questions from businesses and the community for additional measures.

At this time, many businesses have changed service delivery methods due to COVID-19 related sanctions. Some have had the opportunity to offer online shopping, home delivery, or takeout. However, others have had to close their doors entirely. Among many measures taken to protect locations, some businesses have chosen to board up their buildings. This comes as one of the BIA recommendations to ensure security for both the interior and exterior of the businesses.

As indicated in BIA Manager, Jen Pastorius’ quote below, we can confirm that (through discussions with London Police and the City of London), there will be increased security resources for Old East Village during this time.

“London Police Service has reported a spike in commercial break and enters along Dundas Street from Downtown to Argyle, Old East Village businesses have been hit with theft and vandalism at a growing number of locations. The Old East Village BIA has made our Mayor and Councillor aware of the need for additional security in the Village and I am pleased to confirm that additional London Police Service supports have been allocated to our area.”

In addition to COVID-19 measures, we also await City Council’s decision regarding the major construction project on Dundas originally planned to begin in April. We are working closely with City staff to stay informed and prepared on this front and will relay any and all information to businesses and the community as it comes available.

In addition to security and construction related matters, the BIA is a member of Mayor Ed Holder’s Economic Recovery Task Force and has been in close contact with Ward Councillor Jesse Helmer. In mid-March we reached out to area businesses regarding current struggles and ways to mitigate them through support. From this feedback, we prepared and submitted a report to Mayor Holder which is now being reviewed and worked into a fulsome document with input from all five London BIAs and the London Small Business Centre .

We continue to prepare and develop programs and support for a post-COVID-19 world, but will continue to uphold frequent communication with businesses through email and telephone. In addition, we will continue promoting current business offerings to the public through our website directory, online updates, and social media. In addition, check in regularly with our COVID-19 Resource Page. We are here to support Old East Village businesses and property owners.

Please contact us with any questions or concerns, we will do whatever is possible to assist - or by phone at 519-645-7662. Lastly, if you wish to review a copy of the above mentioned Report to the City, please get in touch.

We will get through this together. You stay safe and we will stay in touch.

Feature photo of Susan Day's Gateway Mosaic #4 supported by the London Clay Art Centre by Nicole Borland

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