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The Broadway Business Improvement District (BBID), formally established on August 25, 1986, is an organization born from the collective conscience of the Nutana merchants in Saskatoon. The purpose of the association is to support and advance the interests of all businesses situated within the boundaries of the Broadway district. The BBID also strives to encourage and promote good community relations within the district and surrounding area. A variety of activities are undertaken yearly to ensure that these goals are met: facilitating business advertising, planning promotional events, maintaining frequent communications and strong relations amongst merchants, affecting physical improvements to public land and voicing the concerns of the collective merchant group to municipal government.

The History of the BBID

One of the first major projects for the BBID was to lobby City Hall for money to cover half of the approximately $1,100,000 price tag of refurbishing Broadway as a street. The merchants’ idea stemmed from a desire to transform a high traffic area into one that was busy, colorful and economically viable for small neighbourhood businesses. As Saskatoon’s original commercial district, Broadway used to be the commercial centre of activity in Saskatoon. With the establishment of the Downtown and Riversdale areas, commerce slowly drifted away from Broadway and left in its wake a neighborhood that was losing its identity as well as its customers. The BBID was determined to turn that around.

The merchants approached City Council with a plan to levy a special business tax on approximately 140 Nutana businesses to raise the merchants’ part of the renewal expense. The City would contribute the balance of the expenses incurred. The plan included cobblestone medians, park benches, median signs, new paint on the lampposts, antique style lighting and advertisement posts all coordinated in the same theme. The style of the street furniture and other amenities were designed to give Broadway its own sense of community and character that set it apart from other areas of the City.

This theme still runs throughout the many aesthetic improvements on Broadway Avenue. Ongoing monies from the City’s Urban Design Committee ensure regular maintenance and upgrades to the existing accessories as well as funding new streetscape enhancement projects. Heritage grants also exist for merchants who wish to renovate their buildings or restore their original facades. Local visitors to the area also contribute to the growth and maintenance of Broadway in the way of meter revenues; funds collected in the meters are divvied up between the BID’s as well as the City’s Streetscape Reserve Fund.

 

BBID Office: 813 Broadway Avenue   Saskatoon, SK S7N 1B5    Ph: (306)-664-6463