Cobourg in Partial Lockdown

With most stores closed, all entertainment closed, most restaurants doing takeout only, many businesses sending their workers to work from home and others encouraged to stay at home, Cobourg is in virtual lockdown.  I ventured out today (it was a glorious day!) and looked at what’s happening Downtown, at the Mall and at No-Frills.  The first thing you notice is that there’s no problem getting parking anywhere – although it’s free on municipal meters and parking lots.  The next thing is that since stores and banks are limiting the number who can be inside at one time, there are orderly queues outside. One example was a bit strange: Staples looked closed but on closer inspection they had a sign that… Read complete articleCobourg in Partial Lockdown

A1 Taxi out of Business

On 21 February, the Town of Cobourg revoked the taxi licence for A1 Taxi because of undisclosed infractions against the Taxi bylaw No.014-2014. But the owner, Verander Gill, filed an appeal which was heard on Monday afternoon by the full council.  The appeal was chaired by Aaron Burchat in his role as Protection Services Coordinator but most of the meeting was conducted by Town Clerk Brent Larmer.  Although the appeal was not in a courtroom and there were no lawyers present, Brent used his legal knowledge (he’s a qualified para-legal) to present the documented evidence.  He started by quoting laws that gave the Town authority to govern Taxis and continued with documented evidence from Police and Bylaw officer reports showing multiple… Read complete articleA1 Taxi out of Business

New Management at Beach Canteen Planned

Over the last two years, the Victoria Park Beach Canteen has been operated by the owners of Market and Smor, the downtown boutique greengrocer, but for 2020, a new operator is being sought. As well as the canteen operation, there were four weekends in 2018 and two in 2019 when the nearby “courtyard” was used for licensed events with entertainment.  The Town deemed them a success and has seemingly prompted a suggestion that the new Canteen operator might also offer a licensed service (presumably beer and wine and in the Courtyard). The RFP issued by the Town on 21 February says that they “will consider alcohol as part of this RFP. The Town of Cobourg is open to all ideas for providing… Read complete articleNew Management at Beach Canteen Planned

Work to Start on Restoring Certo Building

On the property of FV Pharma, a subsidiary of FSD Pharma which owns the Cannabis plant at the old Kraft property, there is a derelict building once used to do research on the pectin product branded Certo.  In 2017 it was in really bad shape with an engineering estimate of approx. $500K to restore it so the company asked for a demolition permit.  But after a public outcry (see links below) the permit was denied and the company said they would restore the building and convert it to an on-site dispensary with a completion date of 6-8 weeks or around January 2019.  The announcement was made by Thomas Fairfull but since that time, he is no longer the CEO and… Read complete articleWork to Start on Restoring Certo Building

New Initiatives at Venture 13

The focus at Venture 13 is on encouraging Entrepreneurs – especially young start-ups.  But on Tuesday, Northumberland Community Futures Development Corporation (CFDC) announced a new program where Cobourg Police are partnering with innovators.  On Wednesday, they also announced a partnership with Telus with a focus on the Internet of Things (IoT) technology.  Both CFDC and Cobourg Police were anchor organizations with the Town of Cobourg in the founding of Venture 13 in May 2018.  (See links below).  Wendy Curtis, Executive Director of Northumberland CFDC, said that the Cobourg Police service is “one of the most innovative in the country” and now they are taking it further with their new PoliceTech Accelerator.  That’s not a new pursuit car but a “test… Read complete articleNew Initiatives at Venture 13

Cobourg’s Taxi Regulations to be Updated

In February 2019, Cobourg Council decided to look at the regulations/By-Laws governing Taxis to see if complaints by users and Taxi owners could be resolved.  Issues included availability of accessible cabs, fares not sufficient to encourage new taxis, the cap on the number of taxis was too low and there was no provision for Uber, Lyft and similar services. (The Town calls these Transportation Network Companies – TNCs).  Although the cap was quickly removed, it was felt that input from cab-owners, cab-drivers and taxi users was needed before further changes were made.  So from September 16, 2019 until October 11, 2019, an online survey was conducted that got input from 116 Citizens, 4 Taxicab Owners and 3 Taxicab Drivers but… Read complete articleCobourg’s Taxi Regulations to be Updated

Cobourg’s Ten Thousand Villages to Stay Open

The Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) is a Christian organization dedicated to Social causes – or as they put it “working for peace and justice”.  In Canada in 1972, they started the Ten Thousand Villages chain of stores selling “Fair Trade” goods.  Fair Trade means that the people who make the goods in the stores, generally in third world countries, get paid fairly and sustainably.  (More on this below).  But unfortunately, in the last few years, MCC have found it financially impossible to continue their stores.  In 2018 they closed nine stores and on Tuesday January 21, they announced the closure of the remaining 10 company stores while leaving the twelve “board” stores to make their own decision.  “Board” stores are… Read complete articleCobourg’s Ten Thousand Villages to Stay Open

Northumberland Mall Changes

The Mall is obviously ripe for a makeover but Trinity group who are managing the Mall, are not revealing their plans.  Although Mall ownership changed hands in the last few weeks, Trinity Group are still managing the property.  The Mall looks tired since routine maintenance is not getting done and tenants in the Mall are gradually moving out.  There is growth, but not in the Mall proper – the new “strip plaza” in the parking lot facing Elgin is now at the Site Plan approval stage (more here) and new tenants are moving into the outside spaces. Based on what we know so far, we can deduce that drastic changes will be coming to the inside part of the mall… Read complete articleNorthumberland Mall Changes