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Downtown Winnipeg BIZ: Memo - The latest information for BIZ Members

Dear Downtown Winnipeg BIZ Member,

We at the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ know how difficult this pandemic has been, and continues to be, for our members. We are proud of the steps you have taken to limit the spread of COVID-19. We’re committed to keeping you updated as the restrictions change. We’re also committed to keeping you in the loop on our own neighbourhood.

We’ve heard from you that workers not being downtown was a concern. As of September, about 25 per cent of workers* returned full-time to their downtown offices and another 30 per cent* are splitting time between home and office.

Things have changed since then and they continue to change. We are here to support you. Please reach out to us if you have questions or concerns with the changes in restrictions.

*According to a September 8-17 Probe research study conducted by the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ

Province introduces targeted measures under the Restricted (Orange) level

On Friday, October 16, public health officials announced additional measures to reduce community spread of the virus. The following measures will come into effect on Monday, Oct. 19, for a minimum of two weeks:

  • Lowering indoor and outdoor gathering sizes from 10 to 5
  • Closing all beverage rooms, entertainment facilities, casinos/VLT lounges and bingo halls;
  • Reducing capacity at retail businesses to 50 per cent, including lowering gathering sizes from 10 to five in food courts and common areas;
  • Reducing group/table sizes in restaurants and lounges from 10 to 5 and reducing the capacity at these locations to 50 per cent;
  • Reducing the number of spectators to 25 per cent of a site’s capacity for sporting events;
  • Reducing the capacity of museums, galleries and libraries to 50 per cent and requiring sites to collect contact information for all attendees;
  • Requiring gyms and fitness centres to collect contact information for all attendees

Other restrictions requiring mandatory mask use in indoor public places, reducing liquor service hours and noise restrictions at licensed facilities remain in place.

COVID-19 Survey #5 results show members still need support

Thank you to everyone who filled out our latest survey. As things continue to evolve, we know your priorities and challenges shift. Once again, we asked about your concerns regarding reopening and generating income, and how the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ can support you. We appreciate your feedback and are sharing some of our key findings from our most recent survey, completed by over 70 BIZ members last month.

Results of survey conducted September 13-19, 2020. 71 Respondents. Top 2 concerns you have with reopening/being open right now: 55% not enough income to stay in business | 52% safety of staff and customers

A lack of customer traffic, restrictions making it difficult to justify opening and catching up on debt accumulated during the shutdown remain the top challenges with generating income. The results also showed that the most valuable member supports the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ can offer are continuing grant programs; keeping downtown clean, welcoming and vibrant; and offering incentives for people to shop and visit downtown.

Results of survey conducted September 13-19, 2020. 71 Respondents. What specific supports or programs would be valuable to your business right now? 33% - continuing grant programs for businesses, 30% - incentives for people to shop and visit downtown, 30% - keeping downtown clean, welcoming and vibrant

In addition to new grant opportunities, we’ll soon be launching a new, user-friendly website, complete with an updated directory to help connect people with your downtown business. If you haven’t already done so, please take this short questionnaire to ensure we have the most accurate information about your business.

As always, please don't hesitate to reach out with any questions:

Thank you,

Kate Fenske, CEO
Downtown Winnipeg BIZ