How FortisBC works with businesses during a project

Smiling woman stands behind the counter of a donair shop
/ Community

Local shops and restaurants will remain open during construction and we’re working one-to-one to address their unique concerns.

When FortisBC’s Gas Line Upgrades project began this month, our team immediately got to work by reaching out to local businesses. Throughout the project, FortisBC has been and continues to work with owners and address their unique concerns.

We’re also committed to letting customers know their favourite stores and businesses are still open and that Commercial Drive traffic will continue to flow north-south. But with East 1st Avenue closed, it may take longer to reach them than usual.

Businesses are open during construction

It’s business as usual for shops and stores along the construction route. 

“We take a lot of pride in building strong relationships with our customers and our neighbours,” said Blake Mansbridge, community relations manager, FortisBC. “We work hard to earn the trust of the people affected by our projects, so that through collaboration we can ensure the impact on their business is as minimal as possible.”

Building relationships with business owners begins before construction even starts, reaching out to businesses near the project, and then staying in touch with regular updates through each phase of work.

“We hope that after we finish this project, the community will feel FortisBC did a good job for them despite the inconvenience our work may have caused,” said Chris Coady, manager, property services, FortisBC.

Among the measures FortisBC rolls out to support businesses, is making sure there is signage in place to inform customers that businesses are open. FortisBC will also coordinate with businesses to ensure that deliveries can be made throughout the project.

“We also want to take this opportunity to highlight local businesses through online advertising and social media promotion,” said Blake.

On this project, FortisBC has been reaching out to the business community to let them know that the upgrade project was coming. Once the construction schedule was more defined, and the project announced to the public, an information session was held on April 18 so that nearby businesses would have an opportunity to raise their concerns and have them addressed.

The Commercial Drive Business Society has been working with FortisBC to inform its member businesses of the construction project and hosted the info session.

“Commercial Drive boasts some of Vancouver’s most colourful and diverse shopping and dining experiences, and we want to avoid any disruptions to the vibrancy of our neighbourhood,” said Marcela Nielsen, general manager of Red Burrito restaurant at the corner of Commercial Drive and East 1st Avenue. “We are looking forward to working with FortisBC to ensure businesses along Commercial Drive face minimal disruption from this upgrade project.”