The Town of Bracebridge is located in the heart of Muskoka, a world-class tourism destination that has been highlighted in National Geographic’s 2011 Top Ten Summer Destinations. Situated just 2 hours north of Toronto, Bracebridge is home to approximately 16,000 permanent residents and an additional 9,000 residents during the cottage season.
Bracebridge offers its citizens strong construction, niche manufacturing, hospitality, tourism and professional services sectors along with diversified social, recreational and cultural resources. The community is considered the political, cultural, and economic capital of the region. The following regional organizations are situated in Bracebridge: administrative offices of the District Municipality of Muskoka, the provincial courthouse, head offices for Trillium Lakeland District School Board, South Muskoka Regional Hospital, to name just a few.
Randy Mattice – Manager of Economic DevelopmentBracebridge benefits from an extensive transportation network that links to regional and provincial highways, the nearby Muskoka Airport, rail and bus services.
In order to encourage strong economic growth and sustainable business development, the Town of Bracebridge has implemented a series of development incentives to promote new investments in the community.Randy Mattice – Manager of Economic Development
AMENITIES & INFRASTRUCTURE
• 1 gigabit internet service in many parts of the community
• An education hub that includes many options for post-secondary education
• South Muskoka Memorial Hospital
• Ample electrical capacity to meet any industrial /commercial requirements
• A newly established business park with 22 shovel-ready lots coming on stream in the near future
• A 300 seat community theatre (Rene M. Caisse Memorial Theatre)
• Access to several outstanding golf courses within a 30 minute drive
Bracebridge is a year round community that has something for everyone.
• A community Sportsplex that includes an indoor swimming pool, climbing wall, weight room, indoor walking track and numerous community rooms for a wide variety of recreation possibilities
• An arena, a state of the art 4 diamond baseball complex, a skate board park and a disc Frisbee course
• Numerous walking trails and public beaches
• A culturally vibrant community with annual festivals that include Muskoka Arts and Crafts Summer Show, Midnight Madness, Muskoka Opera Festival, Muskoka Beer Festival….to name just a few
• The iconic Santa’s Village Family Entertainment Park with something for kids of all ages
• Exceptional sports and recreational programs
• Muskoka’s Downtown - a historically beautiful downtown that features one-of-a-kind boutiques, restaurants and services
• Zero Municipal Development Charges: Prior to July 3, 2014, Bracebridge’s non-residential development charge rate was $14.63/m². Today it is ZERO. The District of Muskoka has also reduced its non-residential DC rate from $32.83/m² to $16.47/m².
• Community Improvement Grants & Loans: A wide variety of grants and/or interest free loans are available through the comprehensive Community Improvement Plan (CIP). A Tax Increment Grant is available to property owners whose municipal property taxes have increased as a result of substantial development, re-development, construction or reconstruction of an eligible building or property within the designated areas of the Town. There are also a variety of other grant and loan programs available for existing commercial buildings throughout the community.
• Available Commercial Land: The Town of Bracebridge has an abundance of commercial property available. The newest development is Canyon Court Business Park, a 64 acre business park that features 22 fully serviced lots ranging in size from 0.8 – 8.5 acres to accommodate any proposed development. Each lot has been supplied with traditional services such as water, natural gas, sanitary and storm. However, unique to this park is that all lots will have fibre optic cabling installed so that broadband connectivity is available to any business requiring access to it. The M1 and M2 zoning is flexible to allow for various types of land uses from manufacturing to office developments. In addition to this business park, the Town of Bracebridge regularly updates a list of Available Commercial Land.
• Gig Internet Service: Starting in the spring, businesses in Muskoka and Almaguin will be the first in service. Lakeland Networks will start rolling out the blazing fast Internet in April to customers.
• Streamlined Site Plan Approval Process: The Town of Bracebridge has streamlined its site plan approval process to assist new investors in navigating the municipal approval process. Site plan applications can be approved in as little as 3 weeks. To increase the fast tracking of the development approval process, building permit applications can be submitted concurrently with the site plan application.
• Frozen Building Permit Fees: The Town of Bracebridge has frozen 2015 building permit fees at 2014 levels to assist in promoting new construction.
Small Business Support: If you are starting a small business or looking to expand an existing one, there are a number of resources available to assist you, including:
• Muskoka Small Business Centre is a one stop resource for one-on-one business coaching, financing, and expansion planning. They will also provide you with assistance developing your business plan and launching your small business.
• Muskoka Futures, a Community Futures Development Corporation (CFDC), provides support for business plan development as well as loans for start-ups and expansions.
• There are local employment services agencies that provide assistance free of charge to local employers. These organizations will generate a list of potential employees, qualify their skills, filter out employees for interviews and assist with the hiring process. Other organizations in Bracebridge will also assist with potential training needs or will provide a pool of employees with the skilled trades necessary to meet employment needs.