Airdrie businesses thriving amid economic downturn
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Airdrie businesses thriving amid economic downturn

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Airdrie businesses appear to be thriving even with the low price of oil and the struggling economic climate of its nearest neighbour Calgary.

City officials recently surveyed 41 of 275 industrial businesses and 76 of 616 commercial businesses to find out how they were doing and to get a better sense of the health of their community in this downturn.

The survey found 61 per cent of the industrial and 75 per cent of the commercial businesses that responded were “healthy and growing” or “remained the same.”

According to the results, 58 per cent of industrial businesses have not had to lay off any workers, the other 17 businesses had to lay off a total of 483 workers.

87 per cent of commercial businesses have not had to lay off any employees, the additional 13 per cent have had to lay off a total of 26 people.

“We’re happy with how a lot of our businesses are doing. Yes certainly there’s many in oil and gas that are hurting and there’s a bit of a trickle down effect into some of the other industries but for the most part a lot of our businesses are doing fairly well and holding their own,” said Economic Development Team Leader Kent Rupert.

Rupert says it’s indicative of how different things can be in their community compared to Calgary and the results are fairly similar to what they saw in the last downturn.

“You look at the last sort of downturn that Alberta went through in 2008-2009 and our business community didn’t see that much of an effect from that but this one’s been a little deeper and a little longer.”

They’re now turning to businesses and residents asking for their help in shaping the city’s future with their 10 year economic strategy.

“Businesses and residents are the heart of our community and the local economy, so it is exceedingly important that their voices help shape the city’s economic future.”

People are being encouraged to visit the project’s website.