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The Visitor Economy and Main Streets in a post-pandemic world

(April 2021)

This study summarizes interviews with 47 people that represent Business Improvement Areas (BIAs) and related organizations across Canada on how the visitor economy has played a role in post-pandemic activity, and opportunities for future development. Dr. Walter Jamieson ( is working on a handbook to provide professionals and Main Street leaders with user-friendly frameworks, advice and tools to plan and position their districts from a tourism economy and heritage planning perspective. Please contact him for more information and sign up for our Institute newsletter (external link, opens in new window)  to stay up to date on our ongoing projects.

Toronto BIAs' responses to COVID-19

(October 2020)

Over the summer of 2020, a team of student researchers reviewed the responses of Toronto Business Improvement Areas (BIAs) to the COVID-19 pandemic, and categorised the different reactions and initiatives to help businesses recover.

Toronto BIAs and Tourism

(July 2020)

Toronto is a city of neighbourhoods, and its diversity and culture are created by the residents and their local communities. There are 82 Business Improvement Areas (BIAs) across the city. This exploratory study interviewed 37 people from 29 BIAs in Toronto and considers best practices and opportunities. 

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Every main street, whether it realizes it or not, is or can be part of the visitor economy