Minutes for the Concession Street Board of Management
April 19, 2017
Alcatraz Mystery Studios – 604 Concession Street (8:30am to 10am)
Attendance: Leo Santos, Alana Travis, Brad Robyn, Carolyn Jonatis
Regrets: Jason Hofing, Jules Gauthier, Jamie McHardy
Additional Attendees: David Kosubovich (RBC), Emily Vic (Sustainable Hamilton), Salar (Pokeh), Mike (Relay), Rami Reda (Big Bee), Zoltan (Alcatraz), Meghan (Library), Cristina Geissler (ED)
Opening remarks: Leo SantosApologies for the mixup and locked doors at The Salvation Army. Thanks to Zoltan for opening the Alcatraz doors to our Board meeting.Congratulations offered on a successful Bunny Hop and Seek. Despite the weather we had a great turnout and fun was had by all. Introduction of new faces: David Kosubovich (Branch manager of RBC, Upper Gage and Mohawk), Emily Vic (Sustainable Hamilton), Salar from Pokeh, Rami Reda from Big Bee, Meghan from the Library, and Zoltan from Alcatraz Escape Rooms
Review and approval of agenda
MOTION: C. Jonaitis SECOND: B. Robyn
Review and approval of February, March minutes: pending from Treasurer (delayed due to her relocation and grand reopening of Candi Werx – coming soon)
Treasurer Report from Alana Travis:Financial report review completed.
Motion: B. Robyn Second: C. Jonaitis
Beautification Committee: Deb Kitchen (Cristina Geissler presented)
Canada Flag banners up and commemorative wrought iron arms
Winter planter inserts were left in for Bunny Hop (to avoid them being filled with garbage for our Bunny Hop). Inserts will be removed this week by Harpers Garden Center.
Flowers are scheduled to be planted by the week of May 23rd, 2017.
BIA gateways have been cleaned up. Plantings around the gateways have been cleared. Area has been seeded with grass seed. We are trying to negotiate the city to cut the grass right up to the gateways moving forward. We are also trying to get the flood lights working again.
Marketing Committee: Jason Hofing (Cristina Geissler presented)
Summer series postcards are in. Will be shared with businesses shortly.
Visit Hamilton two page spread is ready to go and will be available in early May 2017.
The Best of Hamilton publication by The Bay Observer was made possible by Councillor Skelly. We have a profile page dedicated to Concession Street. This publication will be sold at the Tourism Hamilton and HamOnt Store. We have copies that will be shared with the membership in the coming weeks.
Events Committee: Jules Gauthier (Cristina Geissler presented)
Mothers Day flowers will be shared along Concession Street on Friday May 12th.
Spring Volunteer clean up Concession Street is ETA for Saturday May 13th. Looking to partner with RBC again this year. More details to follow shortly.
Sidewalk Sounds ready to launch on Friday May 19th (6-9pm). Musicians will be announced shortly. RBC lot tentatively confirmed for use by RBC (hope to have this confirmed shortly). We have approximately 30 vendors to date – that will be stationed along Concession sidewalks between Upper Wellington and Juravinski Hospital. SEAT application with the city ready. More logistic details to follow in the coming weeks.
Cultural Writers Dialogue from 2016 grant has been returned to the city. Limited details in the original grant made it difficult to bring this project to life. City mandated that we return this $1300.
Streetfest organization continues. To date we have just over 50 vendors confirmed. Music tentatively booked. BIA members encouraged to complete the space reservation in front of their businesses if they do not wish to have a vendor set up in front of their storefront. Mapping of vendors and event layout coming in the next month or so.
Safety Committee: Leo Santos
We are working with Councillor Jackson and Skelly (and the head of engineering for Hamilton) to see if we can improve the lights currently installed along Concession Street. There are alternative light configurations that may shed more light on the south side sidewalk – which seems to be universally agreed that it is currently too dark.
Speed along Concession is to be reduced to 40km/hr as per a City of Hamilton initiative.
We are on the waitlist for a flashing light at the cross walk at Juravinski.
Business owners are encouraged to leave lights on in their storefronts. Better illumination acts as a deterrent to “smash and grabs”. Please leave cash registers visibly open and empty. Put up signs that advertise “no valuable or cash left on property. Smash and grabs are not reflective of Concession Street. These are crimes being committed all over Hamilton. The police is very good at catching these perpetrators. Recently Mt Beauty Supply was robbed. Polcie are involved. Please take extra care to safe guard your storefront.
Executive Director updates: Cristina Geissler
Thanks to Councillor Donna Skelly who is making a concert at Sam Lawrence Park happen on the evening of June 16th. The Hamilton Philharmonic will perform at the park, under the stars, immediately following our June Sidewalk Sounds. We hope to encourage visitors to stay longer within our BIA boundaries.
City of Hamilton has shared that currently Marijuana Dispensaries are not legal and the criminal enforcement of this is the responsibility of the Police. The collective Hamilton BIA’s have made their concerns with dispensaries known to City council. We are NOT opposed to Marijuana Dispensaries. We only ask that ALL businesses be held to the same standard of permits, zoning and other municipal rules – as all our other business currently do.
“Understanding that the city should have process to ensure standards are met in public safety and municipal laws, we find it very frustrating and unfair that Marijuana Dispensaries are permitted to fly in the face of these rules. They open their doors right away to start pulling in their income. They are cited and yet they continue to serve their customers. The only thing we are asking is that ALL businesses be held to the same standard.”
Rami Reda cautioned the City in taking a stand against dispensaries. We collectively agreed that once the dispensaries and made legal and the rules and guidelines for their operation are made public, the Concession BIA will openly work with them at that time.
Historic Art Installation was presented at the Bunny Hop. Very well received. It will be redisplayed at our first Sidewalk Sounds.
RBC: Branch Manager of Upper Gage and Mohawk, David Kosubovich, stated that RBC is open for business with Concession Street. They are looking to partner, collaborate and be actively involved in our community and business district. They have identified the changes in our demographics and are invested in continuing to be a part of it. Branch on Concession will close May 26th, 2017. We will continue to have full service bank machines – location(s) to be confirmed shortly. Traffic patterns have been assessed and more than 50% of current clients will be moving to Upper Gage location. Dave will ensure they are staffed to be able to accommodate the influx. Dave will also act as our liaison with the Upper James branch.
Library: The library will be introducing speaking engagements in September 2017. These will invite Concession businesses who would like to speak to community about small businesses and communicate what is involved in launching, operating and managing a small business in Hamilton. BIA members are welcome to participate. Please contact the library for more details.
Alcatraz: May 5th will host a fundraiser for the SPCA Hamilton/Burlington. They will have dogs and cats onsite for adoption. 50% of all proceeds will go directly to the SPCA. The event will run from noon to 11pm. All welcome to attend.
Pokeh: Building is now actively taking place. Scheduled to open for the first Sidewalk Sounds.
CAP: Annual CareWalk May 27 @ 10:00 am - 2:00 pm Registration is only $10.00 per participant, and those under 18 are free. More info: https://cancerassist.ca/
Sustainable Hamilton: Emily talked to membership about their program that encourages and facilitates corporate responsibility. If you are looking for way to reduce waste or set a carbon target for your business, members are encourage to get involved. Please visit for more info: https://sustainablehamiltonburlington.ca/
Meeting adjourned: 9:30am