Economic development on the rise in Smiths Falls

Downtown Smiths Falls
Posted on: September 19, 2018

Submitted

The Economic Development department in the Town of Smiths Falls is pleased to report that economic development in Smiths Falls is on the rise, a trend that looks to continue into 2019, and beyond.

Staff report the upward trend comes as a result of years of background work by council and staff to create an effective economic development strategy, and a welcoming atmosphere for business enterprises and prospective developers.

Town of Smiths Falls Mayor, Shawn Pankow, pointed to signs of economic development success, including an overall increase in business activity as well as an influx of new investments. Specifically, investments related to Canopy Growth Corp. and the international boating company, Le Boat, have garnered international media attention, and helped to position Smiths Falls as a progressive and welcoming community for businesses and industry.

With the legalization of cannabis on the horizon, interest in Smiths Falls as Canopy Growth’s headquarters is expected to continue. Pankow noted that Smiths Falls is home to a number of unique and successful businesses, and sees innovative enterprises like Canopy Growth as an extension of the community’s values and priorities.

“Smiths Falls has a longstanding history of fostering innovative industry,” Pankow said, “As cannabis legalization is introduced across the country, we will be well-positioned to add to the national conversation with our capacity to expand, grow, and support cannabis enterprises.”

Economic Development Manager, Jennifer Miller, reported that in recent months, economic development staff have been inundated with requests for information on investment opportunities in Smiths Falls, and media interviews, another indicator of success. Mayor Shawn Pankow reported the Mayor’s office receives two to three interview requests each week, a pattern that he anticipates will continue, or increase with the pending legalization of cannabis in October 2018.

The impacts of the increase in economic development can be seen in more than just numbers, Pankow stressed, explaining that there has been an accompanying shift in morale for residents and business owners.

“The growth and investment in our community has elevated our confidence and sense of pride… we are truly a community on the rise,” Pankow said.