Chris Krumpholz – Northwood Candidate
1.Businesses are frequently the targets of crime and on the front line dealing with societal problems in the area; what steps do you think should be taken to ensure businesses are protected and our community is safer to explore, shop, work and play in.
Once Victoriaville comes down, there will be ample opportunity to increase traffic both figuratively and actually. The key to a safer area is a busier area, which will create repeat shoppers (“regulars”) and thus causing a community downtown again. People will come if they feel safe, but they also need a reason.
- Neighborhood policing should come back (even if it is intermittent times with a booth set up, just so people know they are watching and can come back at any time.)
- The city needs to host things at a variety of places around the FW area. There are so many beautiful places to host events, (even though some need clean up) but eventually, as we build that core back up to prominence some of those issues will stay cleaned up. We need to support endeavors, and do things in the south like in the north i.e. Parkade concert.
- Recruit more volunteers to help keep the area bright, promote ongoing events that may be happening – i.e. open doors, historic guided walks, engage with the library to co-promote events to draw families back and show progress, because progress shows change.
- What is your impression of the Fort William Business community? What is one thing that is done well and what is one thing that needs to improve?
I have had the fortunate opportunity to work with the FW Business community back in early 2000s when I worked at Victoriaville and have seen many different versions of the BIA. I think the FW Business community used to be more than a BIA it felt like a community, when the Christmas decorations would go up and the decorations/lights at Paterson Park for tree lighting, and the stores were busier it was great. Having been involved more since 2018’s election, I have learned that the same sense of pride and will to do something is in the heart of the FW merchants and owners. I think one thing that the FW Business Community is doing a good job of trying to keep things moving forward and positive despite the ascending climb. One thing I think that would help is if the businesses had more events down in the south side. As someone who spent a lot of time as a kid for church and family events down that way, I remember there being many events that people would gather to. Having a busier downtown would go a long way in improving safety, crime, and overall morale for the business community and their customers.
I remember beautiful flowers in the FW business area, this year (non-covid) there have been mostly weeds in the flower planters, that shouldn’t happen. There needs to be support or structure, to make the small things nice to.
- With the revitalization of downtown Fort William project underway there is no planned community center for the area after the project is completed. Victoriaville provided an important and safe gathering place. What vision do you have to recreate a similar environment for community connectivity?
I feel as strongly now as I did 4 years ago that there are enough vacant properties/buildings either owned by the city or potentially attainable to create such a place. We need more spaces for youth to go and take part in programs, and activities that will help keep them off the streets. This could also be a place that you could hold events and fundraisers that used to be in Victoriaville for neighbouring organizations (ie when churches and organizations had bake sales or craft sales). People displaying pride, providing people with a place to develop pride, realization of self-worth in a place they can feel safe while learning skills (some of which may be used for life). I also feel that we need a general common space that can have multiple uses for example an outdoor concert, a downtown picnic, whatever it is, the Fort William/South Core needs something, they need to feel pride and most of all happy and safe to.