CORNWALL, Ontario – The 18th annual year in review meeting was held Thursday morning at Galaxy Cinemas, hosted by Team Cornwall. With approximately 300 business leaders and members of the community in attendance, Bob Peters, senior development officer with Cornwall Economic Development , addressed the numerous ways that Cornwall has grown in 2016, while also looking forward to the opportunities for next year.
Peters’ presentation outlined how the local commercial and industrial sectors, grew this year. From a new elementary school, a new addictions and mental health centre, the expansion of international education, and renovations at the Cornwall Community Hospital, to the arrival of larger companies like Xplorenet, Atelka, and the growth of more established businesses like SCM, Cornwall has developed across a variety of sectors through business of many different sizes.
“This is always a great time to look back on the year and see all of the successes, and all of the connections between one business and another. We talked about sporting events, and other achievements and all of those connections really come together in a good and fun way,” said city councillor Bernadette Clement.
The meeting also touched on other achievements in the area, including the joint acquisition of the waterfront properties by Akwesasne and the City of Cornwall, and the city’s recent inclusion in an online list of Green cities in Canada.
“It was absolutely positive, if you start adding them up, I’d say well over a thousand jobs,” said Peters. “Certainly some of the bigger employees really stepped up this year.”
“These are full time jobs across all sectors”
With 2017 now just on the horizon, there are many reasons for Cornwall residents to feel optimistic about the future. The city will be looking at a new model for tourism promotion, while city officials and community leaders look beyond next year to develop a new strategic plan, with a focus on attracting a younger workforce, innovation, and skills development.
“Cornwall is filled with a lot of small businesses and it’s really picking up,” said Jeremy Baxter, co-owner of Entelechy Media, and member of the innovation task force for young entrpreneurs. “I feel like there is a great opportunity here, and there isn’t really anything like what we do at Entelechy in Cornwall.”
“Some of the bigger stories are certainly welcome and important,” said Peters. “But if you added up all the investments from the smaller, family owned business, it’s equally important…In the past we were dependent on one or two sectors for growth, but now we see growth across all sectors. That means we have a balanced, sustainable approach to growth.”