Manager of Economic Development, Town of Truro
As the cost of living and population density rises in major cities, businesses are looking at the advantages of living and working in smaller centres.
Small-to medium-sized businesses (SMEs) are an important part of Canada’s economy. According to a report published by Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada in 2020, SMEs account for more than 50 percent of the value added to the country’s GDP. But, as the cost of living continues to rise and population density grows in major city centres, many businesses are looking at the advantages of living and working in smaller cities and towns.
Truro, Nova Scotia recognized the professional and personal needs of business owners and has been savvy in creating a place where entrepreneurs can find the services they need to run their business and a place to call home at the end of the day.
Here are just a few reasons to consider Truro
Location, location, location: This real estate idiom really does hold true. Truro is located approximately 30 minutes from Halifax Stanfield International Airport; is at the junction of TransCanada Highway 104 and Highway 102; the confluence of the north-south and east-west rail lines; and is about one hour from the Port of Halifax—making this town a dream destination for any business that relies on the shipping of goods to and from the rest of the province, Canada and the world.
The best of both worlds: Truro offers a small-town sensibility with the amenities of a big city. “Over the past 10 years or so, Truro has invested a lot in infrastructure, which has enhanced the quality of life here,” said Alison Grant, Manager of Economic Development, Town of Truro. This includes a new hospital, full-service recreation and aquatic centre, library and a 3,000-acre park. New residents will also find a vibrant downtown which includes a local farmer’s market, small local shops, services, and restaurants, all located close to quality family homes, with an average price of $230K in the local area.
The personal touch: This is a town where business owners know other business owners, and everyone knows where to turn for support. “We work closely with businesses and people know that we are only a phone call away,” Grant comments. Programs are designed to meet current needs. During the COVID-19 shutdown, for instance, the Town of Truro partnered with the local Business Improvement District and organized a free local delivery service so companies could get their products to the local consumers. This helped to encourage local spending and was a significant resource for the local small businesses. The organizations also offered a streetscape and beautification program so when local shoppers and tourists started going downtown again, businesses were welcoming and ready for when they arrived.
Be well connected: Truro’s motto is Make the Connection and that really reflects how the community interacts at large. Most people, when asked, say that they like to shop local but, in Truro, the majority of businesses are owner-occupied, and those owners are the locals. It’s not uncommon to shop at a store in the afternoon and see that same owner at a local restaurant later in the evening. It’s also likely you’ll know them by their first name, and be able to strike up a conversation about the local hockey team. There is a real connection between businesses in Truro and the community they serve and live in.
Don’t take our word for it: Miriah Kearney is the CEO/Founder of My Home Apparel and My Home Mercantile. Kearney has lived in Truro for most of her life and opened her second successful business there in 2016. “My Home Apparel is now a national brand, and we ship our goods all over the world, right from Truro,” says Kearney. “Our success is largely due to the support we receive from locals and the Town of Truro, and their belief in my business.” Kearney adds, “The vibrancy of Truro, the growth, affordability and amenities have attracted people from all over Canada. As a result, I am able to hire amazing employees who also love this town we call home.”