Business development programs allow entrepreneurs to receive grant money and tax rebates while the Town benefits from first-class downtown businesses
Monday, March 11, 2019 - Yarmouth, N.S. - The Old World Bakery & Deli, one of Yarmouth’s established eateries, recently received its first property tax rebate cheque as part of the Phased-In Assessment Program designed to stimulate building construction and expand the Town’s economy. Having already received a $5000 grant as part of the Downtown Facade Improvement Program, the bakery is now realizing solid return on investment through these Town initiatives designed to nurture business growth and beautify Yarmouth’s Central Business District.
In 2017, Old World owner Nathan Bain purchased the former law office building at 381 Main Street. Although a solid structure, the property required considerable interior work to make for a welcoming and uniquely ‘old world’ atmosphere. The exterior also needed some attention, while respecting the architecture and provenance of the building’s past. Bain became aware of the Town’s downtown economic improvement programs and the timing was ideal for him to take advantage of both the Façade Incentive and the Development Rebate.
After a period of extensive renovations, Bain reopened the Old World Bakery & Deli in 2018 at its new location. The results were impressive and his passion and vision for his business were clearly reflected in the finished product. Already spoiled by a wide selection of healthy, made-from-scratch food choices, patrons were now welcomed to enjoy dining in a cozy and creatively designed space. Bain’s work and dedication paid off as the renovations resulted in his property value appreciating by 100%. The Old World has also enjoyed an increase in traffic, all due to Bain's investment and his dedication to delivering quality food in a truly inviting space in Yarmouth’s downtown.
The creation of these business development programs have helped in revitalizing the downtown, and according to Mayor Pam Mood, it takes business owners like Nathan Bain to take the leap and create unique experiences that draw people to the downtown core.
"We are so fortunate to have entrepreneurs like Nathan who blend equal parts courage and creativity to give us all these wonderful new businesses," said Mayor Pam Mood. "Since these incentives were introduced, and paired with the return of ferry service, we’ve quickly realized a transformation of the downtown. We now have great places to eat, shop, and simply get together. We’re realizing a change in how people use the downtown, and we have more development and investment happening each year. It’s a very exciting time in Yarmouth."
Yarmouth MLA Zach Churchill, who was integral in getting the legislation passed to make the Phased-in Assessment program a reality, mirrors Mood’s thoughts on how these types of incentives will help Yarmouth grow.
"It is very satisfying to see the real outcome of the legislative changes I brought in during my time as Minister of Municipal Affairs,” said Churchill. “I'm so happy to see municipalities use these new tax tools to encourage development and growth in our communities, and to see the real financial benefit to business owners. It’s great to see Yarmouth leading the way."
For Bain, the façade and rebate programs played an important part in helping him make the decision to invest in his business. He also believes the programs play a role in encouraging business owners and developers to take the extra step and create something of a higher quality.
“Both the rebate and facade programs are ideal for new, renovating, or relocating businesses, the latter two being the case for us at the Old World,” said Bain. “Any return or rebate available on a project of that scale is obviously ideal, not only by putting funds back into the business after the fact, but when looking ahead at future projects. One may be more inclined to invest in a higher caliber of work, knowing that a percentage of the costs can be returned at a later date.”
Bain also adds that working with the Town through these programs was a positive experience.
“Working with town employees on these programs was trouble-free, and I feel, helped build a better working relationship. It allowed for a broader knowledge of business in the town, even extending beyond the programs themselves."
To find out more about the Façade Incentive Program and the Phased-In Assessment Program please visit:
Phased-In Assessment Program - https://www.townofyarmouth.ca/development-rebate-program.html
Downtown Facade Improvement Program - https://www.townofyarmouth.ca/downtown-facade-improvement-program-1.html
PHOTO: left to right: MLA Zach Churchill, Mayor Pam Mood, Old World Owner Nathan Bain and his son Max