Council keeps retail units at Pelissier Parking Garage

Windsor city council decided to try and fill eight downtown retail spaces at the Pelissier Parking Garage rather than convert them into parking spots.

City will consider offering incentives to attract renters

(CBC)

Windsor city council decided to try and fill eight downtown retail spaces at the Pelissier Parking Garage rather than convert them into parking spots.

The city will consider offering incentives for renters willing to fill vacant street level commercial spaces at the  garage. 

City council decided last night to try and fill the downtown retail spaces rather than converting them into parking spots.

But the commercial units are in need of repairs.

Councillor Rino Bortolin suggested the city could offer low rent and incentives for companies willing to fix them up.

"Spoke to real estate agents, different developers, different property owners, asking them what would it take to get you interested, what would it take to get something out there for you to actually consider this," said Bortolin. "I do think it starts the conversation"

Not converting the units into parking is also welcome news to Larry Horwitz, the chair of the Downtown Business Improvement Association.

"We got thousands of students coming downtown," said Horwitz. "They want shopping. They want fun, exciting, interesting shops. They're not looking for parking spots. They're looking for cool streets. The people of Windsor know that. That's why I believe in this, and that's why I believe in this process." 

A staff report said the units need around $1.8 million in repairs to get rid of mould and leaky ceilings.

Only three of the eight commercial units in the Pelissier garage are currently occupied.

City staff will table a report back to City Council offering up suggestions that could entice companies to fill the rest of the spaces.