Jamie Smith, tbnewswatch.com
The new courthouse opened Monday and businesses in the area say they're already seeing more customers.
Southside business owners are seeing more people through their doors and hope there's more to come with the opening of the new consolidated courthouse.
Although the new building only opened on Monday, nearby Steeper's The Tea People has already seen more traffic and customers. Owner Pat Ramirez said people have been buying tea and accessories and even holding meetings at her Victoria Avenue store.
"We're getting some interesting people," she said. "I'm really looking forward to meeting new people in the area.
Petrie's Cycle and Sport manager Nathan Petrie said a lot of new faces have been coming in to get skates sharpened and to look around.
"It's great. The more people we have in the neighbourhood coming down to work every day, the better that is for us and I think it's a good thing for the revitalization of downtown," he said.
Crock-N-Dial's Kathy Skirving said business at her sandwich shop in Victoriaville has slowed a little since hundreds of construction workers finished their work at the courthouse. But employees at the courthouse have been stopping by. She's expecting more workers once they've settled in to their new offices.
With more than 1,000 people expected at the courthouse every day and an increased police presence Skirving is also expecting the area to be more positive.
"With more people it's safer," she said.
As for expected parking problems, the businesses say it hasn't been an issue. Skirving said maybe part of the perceived problem came from people expecting to park right in front of a business, something that won't happen often and isn't necessarily a bad thing.
"You might have to walk a little bit but you know what, we can all use the exercise," she said.