Fostering Innovation, Investment and Entrepreneurship

fostering innovation, investment and entrepreneurship icon

Provide necessary infrastructure to foster growth and be a catalyst to attract investment.

  • It is essential to create an attractive environment for both current and prospective businesses and investors to innovate, invest and embark on new and exciting entrepreneurial ventures
  • The new economy will be dependent on innovation to keep ahead of global competition, so it is necessary to foster creativity, celebrate innovation successes, support research and development and encourage new and expanded business opportunities in Niagara

Focused Projects

  • Expedited process for development
    • Niagara Region will develop an expedited planning approvals process to increase approval certainty and accelerate review with a focus on creative solutions for development initiatives which align closely with Niagara's strategic objectives and priorities. Developed in close partnership with Niagara's local area municipalities, the expedited process will help to empower staff to work with investors and development stakeholders as partners in the building of vibrant and diverse communities within Niagara.
    • The expedited process will also leverage a rapid response team approach to significant development and investment potential, and a non-linear, expedited planning approval process/policy that is accepted and utilized by Regional and local area municipality economic development, planning, and public works staff, as well as Regional and municipal councils
    • The expedited process will provide Niagara Region with a competitive advantage over other municipalities, allowing for accelerated review and approvals processes and coordination of Regional and municipal service provision. The expedited process will be leveraged in site selection and business attraction efforts and will increase approval certainty, as well as the probability of significant development completion.
  • Influence Provincial Plans
    • The Coordinated Plan Review began in 2005 and involves a number of significant planning reviews including the Greenbelt, Growth, and Niagara Escarpment Plans
    • Strong positions from Niagara Region will help influence provincial practices and ensure that these plans evolve in a manner that assists local and prospective businesses
    • Following collaboration with local municipalities, the development and agricultural community, recommendations for the Provincial Coordinated Plan Review were included in a report approved by Niagara Region's Planning and Development Committee in October 2016
    • The recommendations offer solutions that will provide benefit to Niagara businesses, property owners, and municipalities, and consider the Niagara context
    • Staff and Councillors will continue to work with their Provincial counterparts to ensure that the policies and implementation efforts assist Niagara over the long term
  • Joint Economic Development Action Plan
    • Niagara Region is working closely with local Economic Development Officers, CAOs, post-secondary institutions, Innovate Niagara and Vineland Research and Innovation Centre to implement the Team Niagara joint economic development action plan
    • In collaboration with local businesses, the plan emphasizes investment attraction, innovation and entrepreneurship; economic research and analysis; and advocacy to drive results on four key measures: employment growth, building permit growth, regional population growth and increases in the number of new businesses
  • Southwestern Integrated Fibre Technology (SWIFT)
    • Supporting the growth of small businesses in rural areas by expanding access to online and e-commerce tools
    • Securing significant Federal and Provincial investment to improve Niagara's information infrastructure
    • Better connecting residents in rural communities with online information and services

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