Edmonton businesses looking for new ways to stay afloat amidst pandemic
EDMONTON -- Storefront closures in Edmonton’s core have been a common occurrence since the start of the pandemic. To stem the tide, the Downtown Business Association surveyed its members to see what’s important right now to help their businesses survive.
The Starlite Room is usually busy most nights with live music. The stage has been quiet for several months, but the roof is another story.
They’ve had a few physically distanced unannounced concerts on the roof with the parking lot area before used as a viewing area.
“We’ve only had a couple of times, but the bands love it and so far we’ve had a lot of happy audience members as well,” said Tyson Boyd, the Starlite Room’s owner.
That kind of initiative is what the interim director of the DBA says will be needed as they released a new report.
MBA student Kennedy Quigley contacted stakeholders, including 15 businesses downtown, to see what they are focused on right now, including food security, hygiene, inclusivity and diversity.
A live roundtable discussion was also part of the initiative on how to adapt and maybe even thrive during physical distancing and beyond.
“The stories that are included in this report are the innovations we saw popping up downtown,” said Quigley.
Boyd says his roof top concerts might be an inspiration, but they are not profitable, but he says right now that’s not the point, he, like the association.
“I think we just really need to remain positive,” he said.
With files from CTV News Edmonton's David Ewasuk