To Plaster Rock or Moncton? I report, you decide

I came across this poll last week.  It was done last fall and published in Canadian Business magazine.  The survey was entitled When Local Governments Compete for Business: Excellent Workforces Are Very Appealing, But Not Good Schools or Entertainment.

The primary question was:

On a 7 point scale where 7 means very important and 1, the opposite, please score each of the following factors as reasons why you would choose or recommend one municipality.

Here were the answers.

Now, a couple of people said I was harsh when I condemned the Miramichi Leader editorial last week complaining that the new four lane highway between Miramichi and Moncton would primarily benefit Moncton.  To the Leader, I say this.  Where on this list of top site selection factors is the retail sector?  It’s not even on the list.  Restaurants and entertainment were the lowest ranked issue.  What were two of the top three?  Good intra-city (i.e. Miramichi to Moncton) transportation and good access to airport and main highways.  

The Miramichi Leader should spend far more time worrying about how the community is going to grow its manufacturing, ICT, animation, etc. than the potential loss of retail shoppers to Moncton.

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4 Responses to To Plaster Rock or Moncton? I report, you decide

  1. Anonymous says:

    Schools unimportant eh? So why was Kelly Lamrock pilloried by people who weren’t qualified to carry his water bottle? I guess we know. And we pay good for it. But when qualified people are needed to fill the 40,000 jobs projected for the U.S energy project, they will come from everywhere, for the money. We have the laborers

  2. mikel says:

    That’s a little disingenuous. Why would a local business list the retail sector? It’s virtually a given, so may not have even been included by the pollsters. I didn’t say you were harsh though, but just off the mark since they are making the same complaint as you-that ED MEANS ‘better highways’.

    Plus, a poll is just a poll. A FAR better poll is to ask Miramichi businesses where they rate a new four lane highway because of what it will do for them. The real story is that it is a NON story as I can hardly imagine ANYBODY saying “lets go to moncton cuz of that wider highway”. There already IS ‘good intra city travel.

  3. Anonymous says:

    We know this is a scam because it was started by the chretien, Doug Young, mckenna, liberals who all have a certain investment in it. But how do you stop it?

    Attention all New Brunswickers, I believe it is important to let you know what amount of New Brunswickers’ money is being wasted on two P3s projects in New Brunswick.

    In 2007, New Brunswickers paid more than $10 million to Maritime Road Development Corporation (MRDC), a private company, to maintain the highway between Moncton and Fredericton.

    We also paid $11.8 million to another private company, Brun-Way, to maintain the highway between Fredericton and Edmundston.

    Those excessive amounts of money don’t even include the leasing fee of $73.5 million the government paid last year to MRDC.

    These highways were built by previous governments. Now, the Liberal Government is going down the P3 highway again. It will seek a P3 project for the twinning of the entire length of Route 1 from River Glade to St. Stephen and Maine, US border.

    What’s crazy about this adventure is that there is only around 50 kms of highway to be twinned, but to get this done, the NB Government is willing to sell off the whole road to another big corporation.

    This major investment, along with the future operation and maintenance will be undertaken through a public private partnership.

    P3 highways are not better and are certainly more expensive than publically owned highways built using the traditional model.

    At the end of the day, CUPE Local 1190 public sector jobs will be eliminated for low wage, non-unionized and non-secure jobs. This government has to stop wasting our tax dollars on P3s. They are bad business for all New Brunswickers.

    Andrew Hardy

    CUPE Local 1190 President

  4. Anonymous says:

    Fredericton, unhindered by duplicity! Soaring

    Top seven reasons why Fredericton is a top 7 community
    SHAWN BERRY
    The CEO of Remsoft, Andrea Feunekes, still remembers the smile of delight on a business partner’s face the first time she used the city’s public wireless internet service, Fred-eZone.

    The partner from Brazil was making her way from the Crowne Plaza Hotel to Remsoft’s offices in the TD building early one morning when a text message flashed on her phone.

    It was her home office, and they were in trouble. Part of their computer system was down.

    The South American company president ducked into a Queen Street cafe, grabbed a cup of coffee and a muffin and opened her laptop and connected to Fred-eZone.

    “She spent 90 minutes talking to them on Skype (an Internet phone service) doing tech-support. It was a fairly critical problem, so she walked them through it to find a solution,” Feunekes said.

    After getting her own company back on track, the businesswoman packed up and carried on with her day’s itinerary.

    “When she came into the office, she had a huge smile and said, ‘It didn’t even cost me anything.’ She couldn’t believe she could sit down, have a coffee, solve all her problems at home and get on with her day.”

    They’re the kinds of stories the people behind Fred-eZone, the city’s free Wi-Fi service, love to hear. They’re happy to tout the service as the first free public Wi-Fi service in Canada.

    Users love it, too.

    At Read’s Newsstand and Cafe, customers with laptops are always stopping in to sit down, have a coffee and access Fred-eZone.

    “I like it a lot,” said Ryan Carruthers, a 28-year-old from Fredericton who’s studying wind-turbine engineering at Holland College in Prince Edward Island.

    He’ll use it to access websites over the Internet, check his email, go onto Facebook and maybe even place a bid on eBay.

    While Carruthers said the system is “not super fast,” the benefit is that “it’s totally free.”

    “Fredericton is the only place I’ve ever been to with free wireless all over the downtown,” he said.

    Fred-eZone is part of the city-owned telecommunications company, e-Novations.

    The company was created to provide affordable access to a fibre-optic network.

    What is being given away is the capacity that members of e-Novations have bought and aren’t actually using at that time.

    Read’s owner Jeff Magnussen said there are always customers using the service. But he figures six out of 10 users don’t realize the city operates it as a free service for everyone.

    “I think it was a great move to do this on the part of the city. For us, it’s become a part of our business,” he said.

    For her part, Feunekes said the service speaks to the kind of community Fredericton is.

    “It’s an intelligent community that takes the hassle of getting access away and gives it to everyone,” she said.

    She said business visitors are always impressed.

    “People come to visit and say they can’t wait for their own community to get on with it.”

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