Heart of Orléans BIA

Happy Birthday BIAs!

Today is the day! September 16th marks the 50th anniversary of the legislation that created BIAs, a made-in-Canada initiative that has become one of our greatest exports. 

The legislation has inspired Downtown Revitalization around the world with Business Improvement Districts (BIDs), Business Improvement Areas (BIAs), and Business Revitalization Zones BRZs in many countries, including the US, Great Britain, Scotland, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Singapore, India, and China.

The Heart of Orléans BIA, formed in 2008, proudly celebrates 12 years alongside this 50-year milestone.

Some quick BIA fun facts:

  • Legislation was first created in 1970 (source: OBIAA)
  • First BIA in the world was Bloor West Village (source: OBIAA)
  • There are currently about 310+ BIAs in Ontario (source: OBIAA)
  • There are 19 BIAs in Ottawa (source: City of Ottawa)
  • More than 70% of Ontario’s BIAs are members of the Ontario Business Improvement Area Association (OBIAA), including the Heart of Orléans (source: OBIAA)
  • BIAs represent over 100,000 Businesses and 17,600 property owners (source: OBIAA)
  • The accumulated annual Levy of Ontario’s BIAs is more than $55M (source: OBIAA)
  • The 19 Ottawa BIAs generate about $7.4 million annually through their levies to support their districts. (source: City of Ottawa)
  • The 2020 Heart of Orléans BIA Levy is $234,933 (Source: Heart of Orléans BIA)
  • Ottawa’s 19 Business Improvement Areas (BIAs) collectively represent more than 6,400 businesses who employ 120,000 people. That’s about a 1 in 5 jobs across the city. (source: City of Ottawa)
  • Ottawa’s small businesses are the foundation of our local economy by providing services, job opportunities and vibrancy to our neighbourhoods. 95% of Ontario and Canada businesses are small. In 2016, small businesses in Ottawa were at 93%. More than 35% of jobs in Ottawa come from these small businesses. (source: OCCOBIA)
  • Orléans has the highest concentration of bilingual and educated individuals across all of Ottawa.
  • The Heart of Orléans has a long term economic development vision that complements Phase 2 of LRT. We want to see a revitalized and vibrant BIA district including some mixed use buildings that would encourage walking, biking and driving.

A BIA is integral to advancing a distinct, livable, vibrant and resilient business district in its local community. 

We encourage you to get involved this week!

  1. Share stories of how our BIA has made a positive impact on your community.
  2. Promote our BIA in your business and in your area by including our BIA vinyl logo in your window or our “Proud Member of The Heart of Orléans BIA!” logo on your website.
  3. Share our social media posts and blogs on your own social media.
  4. And MOST IMPORTANTLY continue to support our local small businesses 

This year COVID-19 definitely put a damper on a few things but we still managed to create a brand new website, host a couple of events such as Fete Frissons and the Summer Series with our Shenkman partners as well as implement our very first BIA Happy Hour. We hung new BIA Banners, put out some new shiny benches and even showed our green thumbs with our beautiful summer planters! Stay tuned for our fall and winter decor that includes updated seasonal planters as well as our LED snowflakes to brighten up those colder months! 

We are very proud of our little BIA in the Heart of Orléans and look forward to moving it forward during the next 50 years! Join us in wishing all the BIAs a very Happy Birthday!

#heartoforleans #50yearsforward