PEI

'It's pretty exciting': Work underway at Summerside's new eco-business park

The diggers are out at Summerside's new 14-acre eco-business park near Credit Union Place. The city says crews will be on site all fall, installing all the shared services businesses will be able to use at the park. 

Commercial lots being serviced this fall, to make way for building this spring

Work is underway to turn 14 acres of land in Summerside into fully-serviced commercial building lots. (Brian Higgins/CBC)

The diggers are out at Summerside's new 14-acre eco-business park near Credit Union Place. 

The city says crews will be on-site throughout the fall, installing all the shared services businesses will be able to use at the park. 

"It's pretty exciting," said Summerside Coun. Brian McFeely. "It's bringing in the roads and water and sewer, the electrical, all those important pieces required. That's what Phase 1 includes — the parking areas, those sorts of things. So it's very important."

That work will cost $1.5 million, McFeely said, with the provincial and federal governments covering 80 per cent of it. 

McFeely said the goal is to have some of the half to one-and-a half acre commercial lots ready for businesses to build on by the spring.  

Council was presented with this plan for the project in September 2018. (City of Summerside)

'Significant interest' in lots 

Summerside is targeting businesses that would follow environmentally-friendly practices and aim for net-zero carbon emissions.   

McFeely said the city's open to selling or leasing the land. 

Summerside Coun. Brian McFeely says the ultimate goal of the new eco park is to boost the city's commercial tax revenue. (Steve Bruce/CBC)

"We're in conversation with a number of companies who have expressed some interest. And there's two or three that have expressed significant interest," said McFeely. "So hopefully we can move those to the next phase here, and bring this to fruition."

The councillor said the big aim of the project is to increase the availability of commercial space in Summerside, and to boost tax revenue. 

"Our goal here is to increase the commercial tax base basically," he said. "If we can move that from 17 per cent of our total tax income to 21 per cent, that's well over a million dollars in additional tax revenue."

McFeely said drivers in Summerside can expect some "minor" traffic interruptions in the Greenwood Drive area, while the first phase of construction is happening this fall. 

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