Kitimat EDO digging in to economic gardening in 2014

Kitimat's economic development office is looking at helping the small business next year.

Come 2014, the District of Kitimat’s economic development office will be putting on their gardening gloves, so to speak.

Rose Klukas, the town’s economic development officer, recently returned from Kelowna where she was introduced to the new concept of “economic gardening.”

In this context, economic gardening is a means to tend to the community’s smaller business and give them tools to help them grow.

“Lots of my day is spent with industrial proponents but the reality is small business has a big impact on the local economy and I`m thinking more than ever our small businesses have the advantage of this booming economy, but for some people…they might just need a little coaching in a new direction,” said Klukas.

The program, once it’s put into place, will focus primarily on existing businesses and teach them new ways to reach their market.

For example she said that geographic information systems (GIS) maps can give entrepreneurs more insight into where their customers are.

“For example if you`re thinking of opening up a pizza place, you could use your GIS system to see how many pizza places are in the northwest, what kind of competition you have,” she said.

In Kelowna where the economic gardening conference was held, Klukas said law firms and bakeries had taken advantage of GIS systems. She added businesses like dog sitters could use such maps to find the areas where working dog owners lived.

But the GIS is only a part of what economic gardening is.

“The other facet of it is to provide coaching and assistance to small businesses for business retention and expansion,” she said.

She said Kitimat is well primed to offer a niche business market.

“You don`t necessarily want to repeat what`s happening in your neighbouring communities. It`d be better to have niche businesses that would attract people into our community,” she said.

Just Posted

B.C. Legions in need of young members to continue aiding veterans into the future

Lest we forget what thousands of men and women did to fight for Canada’s freedoms – but without new membership, many Legion chapters face dwindling numbers

Kitimat commits itself to the global fight against polio

Mayor Phil Germuth signs a proclamation

$2 million landfill capping complete

The purpose is to minimize potential leaching of contaminants from the site.

Pipeline company urges rejection of many seeking intervener status in jurisdictional hearings

Those seeking to participate include District of Kitimat and Haisla Nation

North Coast figure skater to star in Dancing On Ice

Carlotta Edwards learned to skate in Prince Rupert, before becoming a star with millions of viewers

VIDEO: Amazon to split second HQ between New York, Virginia

Official decision expected later Tuesday to end competition between North American cities to win bid and its promise of 50,000 jobs

B.C. cheese linked to 5 E. Coli cases

People are asked to throw out or return ‘Qualicum Spice’ cheese

Canada Post no longer guarantees delivery times amid more rotating strikes

The Canadian Union of Postal Workers closed two major processing centres in Ontario and B.C.

B.C. city councillor resigns as AutismBC director amid SOGI controversy

AutismBC president Gary Robins says Laurie Guerra’s resignation is effective Nov. 12

McGill students vote overwhelmingly to change Redmen team nickname

Student union held a referendum after a campaign by Indigenous students

B.C. university Pride group replaces white supremacy posters

Around 50 people walked through downtown Victoria to share posters of love

B.C. to invest $492 million in affordable homes

72 new projects are part of a 10-year, $1.9-billion strategy

Around the BCHL: Surrey Eagles sliding and Cassidy Bowes flows

Around the BCHL is a look at what’s happening in the league and around the junior A world.

Pit bull cross, chihuahua owners must split costs for dogfight damage, judge rules

Eac side responsible for $577.43 towards injuries in Comox Valley incident

Most Read