Backed by a panel of industry experts and politicians, Mayor Lois Jackson laid out the many reasons why Delta is the place to do business during the Mayor’s Economic Business Breakfast last Friday at Tsawwassen Springs.
“Delta is one of the strongest places in all of Metro Vancouver in which to invest for future business, for good jobs and economic growth,” Jackson said. “Our geographic location and the availability of developable lands creates the best investment environment possible for the business community.”
The six-term mayor pointed out that Delta is home to the largest container terminal in Canada, the largest coal terminal on the west coast of the Americas and is home to a pair of economic dynamos in Annacis Island and Tilbury Industrial Park.
She said all of these are examples of why Delta is and continues to be open for business.
“Combined, Annacis and Tilbury that is over 3,450 acres of industrial land, a home base to over 700 businesses providing over 18,000 good paying jobs. They provide nearly $40 million annually in municipal taxes alone,” she stated. “Within that you have aerospace, manufacturing, construction, distribution, energy, high tech, transportation, deep sea and shipping, communications, farming and tourism industries – all here in Delta.
“Delta’s location provides incredible opportunities.”
But she said location only tells part of the story.
“Location provides the potential, but we need to do the rest,” Jackson added. “Through leadership and hard work, our Delta city staff and council have created an environment that is ripe for development. The notion of working together to achieve success will always lead to first-class results.”
She also said that becoming a city this year has sent a strong signal to the region and beyond that Delta has grown up and is no longer an afterthought for the development community.
Other panelists included Delta MP Carla Qualtrough, provincial Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Claire Trevena, Todd Yuen from the Beedie Group, Paul Tilbury from Dayhu Group of Companies and keynote speaker Robin Silvester, president and CEO of Vancouver Fraser Port Authority
Qualtrough highlighted last week’s federal budget and encouraged businesses to work with her office on potential funding opportunities.
Trevena also talked budget — the NDP’s first provincial budget — speaking about transportation and infrastructure issues, including removing the tolls on the Port Mann and Golden Ears bridges, the construction of a new Pattullo Bridge and the construction of an additional lane on the Alex Fraser Bridge, which she said will ease congestion and help with the free flowing movement of goods.
Silvester said Delta is a critical port community and will be for years to come thanks to continued investment into port operations and productive partnerships with all levels of government.
“Based on the 5,000 port-related jobs, 2,000 direct jobs paying more than 50 per cent above the national wage average, and more than $500 million annually spent locally in Delta as a result of port activity, more than $6 million paid in municipal taxes, it provides a significant lift for the region,” he said. “It is driven by both the geography here, but also by a strong business environment.
“I believe Canada’s growing trade through the port can continue to build Delta as a business destination and equally importantly as a thriving community. I urge you to all help us communicate the port’s value to the Delta business community and the broader community here in Delta.”