Apr. 29, 2019

Downtown looks forward to better days in the future

GOOD MORNING NANAIMO – Downtown Nanaimo's repution is not exactly sterling. That’s what a group of Vancouver Island University students discovered in a research project. The students, known as ACE Nanaimo, found many people don’t go downtown because they believe it’s a dangerous, hard-to-access place where nothing ever happens. One of the biggest negatives is the intersection of Commercial Street and Terminal Avenue, the main access into downtown. Mayor Len Krog agrees that corner is a main intersection and it's not appealing. He said turning the A&B Sound building into an outdoor public art gallery has brightened the corner but serious issues still remain. He has hope, however, that Diana Krall Plaza could get a new injection of activity if the city gets federal money for the addition to the Port Theatre. If that happens, there will be an entrance way off the Plaza which can be used as a gateway to revitalizing the area. Krog is optimistic crucial work will be done to continually boost the area. Greater Nanaimo Chamber of Commerce CEO Kim Smythe says the area has already made great strides. The Chamber’s announcement that it is bringing back the popular Thursday Night Street Market in June is more good news.

SIGNING OFF - Dominic Abassi is taking on a new role as Media and Government Relations Advisor with Island Health. The new job is based in Nanaimo. His last day on-air at NanaimoNewsNOW and Island Radio is May 7. Good luck with the new gig, Dom.

NEW ASSISTANT SUPERINTENDENT - The principal of Dover Bay Secondary School , Don Balcombe has been named assistant superintendent of secondary learning, effective Aug. 1.  Ladysmith Public Schools superintendent Scott Saywell made the announcement. In addition to experience as principal of the high school, Balcombe also has administration experience with secondary schools in Vernon, Kitimat and Terrace.