Manifesto Multilinko
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Sunday, December 13, 2009
revitalising Centretown - the food connection

European cities have a neighbourhood pattern: butcher, baker, cheese shop, fishmonger...

These dedicated stores make for a great part of walkable urban life.

Centretown has many great aspects: restaurants at all price points and for all tastes, a nice big grocery store in Hartman's, some smaller food stores, lots of good services, and a good bakery (I like Bread & Sons), but those other traditional anchors are still missing, and are something that Westboro and the Market have to offer that Centretown doesn't.

I hope this may happen, err, organically, as storefronts close on Bank and reopen as specialty shops. But another opportunity would be the Central Phase II development, which has

ground-floor retail. They're suggesting the possibility of an urban-format grocery store in that space.

Central Phase II - what do you think? - December 12, 2009

I'm not sure I know what "urban-format grocery store" means, Hartman's is a good grocery store and it's only four blocks from Central II, plus Shoppers Drug Mart in Central I will have routine food items. It doesn't make sense to me to have another regular grocery store with Hartman's that close.

You've probably guessing where I'm going: Central Phase II with a ground floor of excellent baker, butcher, and cheese shop would be awesome.

I would also think--hint, hint, Urban Capital Central developers--that being able to say you have a boutique butcher, bakery and cheeseshop would not only add to your urban cred, but would be a big help in marketing and might let you bump the price up a bit too. Why not Salslove's Centretown? Nicastros Central? Art-is-in McLeod? Would be a major boost to an area that I think is ready for it - and would probably help drive additional development down Gladstone, and encourage more foot traffic from the Glebe (recognizing the Queensway underpass is still a pretty discouraging barrier).

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