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March 26, 2001
Mayor Mel Lastman stresses importance of BIAs at the 2001 National Conference
Mayor Mel Lastman was the first speaker to take the podium at the 2001 Business
Improvement Area National Conference "Staying Competitive on Main Street,"
today in Toronto.

Mayor Lastman spoke to BIA representatives from across North America, stressing
that BIAs are instrumental in a healthy and economically viable city.

"BIAs are committed to improving their neighbourhoods and committed to
improving their city because they know their cites are committed to helping
them do it," said Mayor Mel Lastman. "Toronto's 38 BIAs, with budgets worth $4
million dollars and representing more that 14,000 businesses across the City,
are leading the charge to beautify their community through programs such as the
Mural Program which turns graffiti-stained walls into works of art."

The two-day conference is jam-packed with informative and entertaining speakers
and continues through March 27 at the Marriott Eaton Centre Hotel.

Allan Jacobs, author, city planner and urban designer will be giving the
luncheon seminar on March 27. Other conference topics include:
  • Retail Trends in Canada
  • Main Street Safety
  • Big Box Retailing
  • When Hollywood Comes Knocking
  • Smart Card Based Loyalty Programs
    Media Contact
    Bill Steiss
    Director Small Business and Local Partnerships



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