As 2022 draws to a close Brando n Mayor Jeff Fawcett is pleased with how the city has come out of the pandemic.

Fawcett says there are a number of positive signs the city is heading in the right direction, but he also knows they have more to do so growth can take place in Manitoba’s second largest city. “I’d say the city’s in pretty good shape. We’re still selling homes and development continues. The supply chain issues seems to be better because it was a big issue that was impacting day to day but it’s less of an impact now.”

“We have some big things coming up and growth could be slowed significantly if we don’t do some work. So for 2023, 2024 and 2025 we’re going to be at capacity, and we need to address those things. One the commercial front it was hurt by covid. We haven’t seen a big downside but we know the commercial side has changed.”

Jeff Fawcett notes a lot more people turned to buying online but he adds people are back in restaurants and events and he expects those numbers will continue to climb as we head into the new year.

Inflation is impacting more city residents and Jeff Fawcett says it is being noticed at places like the food banks. “There has been an increase and the big thing is the increase in the number of working families coming for food that have never used a food bank and thought they’d never have to use the service.”

As for Brandon’s downtown area Mayor Fawcett who considers himself a glass half full kind of person says they could use more water in the glass when it comes to improving the downtown area. “I know of several things that are going on so I see the potential. The bottom line is covid hurt the downtown a great deal.”

“We have some of the best jobs in the city such as accounting companies, law firms and banks and everyone worked from home and disappeared for two years. Those dynamics really changed but it’s changing back again, and people are working and they’re back down there again. There’re things like a proposal for the old Strand property. There are a lot of things going on that could really be beneficial for the downtown area,” said Fawcett.