It’s time for Brampton to leverage our sports and arts heritage to spur economic activity beyond manufacturing and distribution. Milton, Markham, and Ajax, are some of the communities in our own backyard that are seeing the rewards of having a robust sports strategy.
As a city, we have relied on the Powerade Centre to attract tourism though semi-pro hockey and basketball. That strategy has arguably been a failure from day one. The city should be working much more closely with umbrella organizations like the Brampton Sports Alliance which represents many well run local sports organizations. These organizations could be hosting Provincial and National tournaments throughout the year that will attract tourists who shop, eat, sleep and explore our City. With our low dollar, we could even be attracting tourists and events from our southern neighbours.
The City of Brampton will soon be consulting with its local sports and arts organizations this year to find our what is working, not working, and how the city can help so that we all benefit. Let’s hope this is more than just a token gesture because this type of effort has worked in communities across the USA and Europe. Residents, small business owners and local sports groups are all onside to see sports become an economic driver for our local economy.
We missed out on provincial and federal investments from the Pan Am and Parapan Am Games. We missed out on having a say in how provincial funds get allocated for our local rapid tranist. Let’s not miss out anymore. We need to develop a comprehensive sports strategy that leverages the strengths of our local organizations and our accessibility to the 410, 401, 403 the Airport while also taking into consideration our existing assets. We are Canada’s 9th largest city and it is about time we acted like it and make ourselves attractive for investment.
Let’s work together… residents, community leaders and sports groups to ensure we develop Sports as an economic driver of our city.