A downtown development agency is working on a plan to give south Main Street a facelift and attract more businesses and people to the area.

CentreVenture Development Corp. will consult residents and business owners along Main south of Portage and also see what property might be available.

The project, dubbed the South Main Redevelopment Strategy, aims to buy and develop property to make the area a busier place.

Portage and Main

Developers are developing a strategy to redevelop Main Street south of Portage Avenue to attract businesses and people to the area. (Google Street View)

John Scoles owns Times Change(d) High and Lonesome Club at Main and St. Mary’s Avenue.

“We try to populate that corner with people and that’s what everybody talks about being great for downtown,” said Scoles.

He said he wants to see “more of that. More of what we’ve been trying to do for the last 14 years.”

For that to happen urban planning expert Jino Distasio said some surface parking will have to go.

Distasio, who heads up the University of Winnipeg’s urban studies institute, said The Forks will also have to be a major part of any redevelopment strategy for the area.

“It’s a key part of our city, and it’s still screaming for attention – maybe for a developer to take a gamble, take a risk on one of these surface parking lots,” said Distasio.

CentreVenture’s development strategy won’t be implemented until 2015 and the corporation expects development to continue into 2016.