Campaign question 4: Ross Watson (council incumbent)

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The layout of the community and the focus on the success of the Quarry has resulted in a perceived rift between our growing business community and our Historic Downtown businesses. How will you, as a mayor or councillor, foster a business community that is more cohesive?

The Quarry draws contrast to the uniqueness of the Historical Downtown. The stores and shops in these two areas target different markets. Linking both these diverse shopping experiences with a pedestrian walkway over or under the CPR rail line at Grand Boulevard would benefit the Historical Downtown. The Quarry would also benefit from the added experience the Historical Downtown provides to the overall shopping area.

The “Old Town Hall ” site is in the process of being transformed into a new office commercial centre. Planning must include clear lines of site and wide sidewalks to the historical heart of town.

Physically connecting the Quarry, Historical Downtown and new office commercial centre would have the possibility of marketing Cochrane’s downtown as a unique and complete shopping experience.

The CPR pedestrian crossing and the development of the new office commercial centre could start in 2018. I would advocate that the downtown businesses, the town’s economic development department, and Cochrane tourism start working together on this opportunity.

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Cochrane Eagle