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Economic development plan approved by Council

Steven Antunes, Elliot Lake's economic development manager presented a report to Council on Monday that said increased housing starts and the city supporting businesses are key to the plan
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After receiving a report from newly- minted Elliot Lake Economic Development Manager Steve Antunes Monday night, City Council accepted his call for developing an economic development strategic plan.

It means now the Economic Development Committee will start working on details of the plan, starting in 2022.

As Antunes sees it, increased housing starts and city support for business are the main pillars of the plan.

He says it comprises three steps, which include working with and expanding on what is already available, rebranding and expanding residential housing stock, and attracting new business, based on residential planning.

"The City of Elliot Lake has seen a dramatic shift in the interest of both commercial and residential lots and opportunities in the last 18 months," a report from Antunes to Council said. "There are a very small amount of available residential properties and even fewer commercial properties available. This limited availability of property is primarily due to the huge influx of people moving to Elliot Lake. This trend was beginning to be evident before the pandemic, but has only accelerated since March 2020..

Antunes believes Elliot Lake is primed for economic growth yet the last time an economic development strategy was produced was in 2012-13. At that time it was part of a larger report.   

He told council the Economic Development Strategic Plan ties in with the city's goals of coming up with a comprehensive marketing plan, putting investment tools in Elliot Lake in place and putting together an industrial upgrade plan. 

It would also tie in the Elliot Lake Airport with a view to establishing passenger and freight service there.


About the Author: Brent Sleightholm

As a reporter, Brent has covered everything from amateur and professional sports, to politics, entertainment, police and courts, to human interest stories and government issues
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