Skip to main content

Some locals seeing early success in Chinatown revitalization efforts


The revitalization of Chinatown is well underway.

It's been three months since the Edmonton Chinatown and Area Business Improvement Association started its long-term "Chinatown Solution" project, and the organization said things are going well.

The initiative includes steps to create a cleaner and safer Chinatown, with hopes that revitalization will help attract more business to the area.

"People are waiting to come back downtown, they’re waiting to come back to Chinatown. We have to give them a product that they’re looking for," said Stephen Hammerschmidt of the Edmonton Chinatown BIA.

To help clean up, around 24 people from the Hope Mission's Recovery Program have been hired to wash sidewalks and store windows every two weeks.

"We’ve been doing this for two and a half months now and it has done a great deal to change the image of Chinatown," Hammerschmidt said, adding the work is also helping people recovering from addiction.

"We want to make sure that they succeed. When they succeed, we succeed," he added.

William Chen recently took over the Van Loc Vietnamese sandwich shop in Chinatown and he's excited about the initiative. He said cleaner streets mean more customers.

"It's really bringing a positive outlook to a once maybe very unfortunate area in the city," Chen said.

"We’ve definitely seen an uptick in sales and traffic into the doors. Lots more people are walking by as well, so that’s always welcome," he added.

The association has put up signs in the area to try and deter encampments near businesses and there are plans to fix all the broken fences in the area.

The Edmonton Chinatown BIA is also launching the "Chinatown is Open" initiative, which will give $40,000 bursaries to four businesses looking to open in the area. Top Stories

Stay Connected