The Town of Maidstone tackled the challenge of economic development 30 years ago. They looked at the way that prairie small towns were going and decided that they had to be pro-active if they were going to keep their town economically viable. They zoned an area as an Industrial Park, provided services to the area, and actively promoted their community as an excellent location in which to do business. The Industrial Park was removed from the residential and business areas in the town, ensuring that those areas were not disrupted by the noise and machinery of that area.

Industrial Park 2WHAT CAN WE DO?

Town Planning departments are already zoning for commercial and residential areas in towns although they often do not enforce their own by-laws when industrial businesses are established in areas which are not zoned for that purpose.

District Assemblies could be much more proactive in generating economic activities in their areas if they were to take an approach similar to that which Maidstone took. By focusing some of their attention on industrial parks they could create more employment and give young people more reason to stay home instead of moving to the cities in search of work.