Fleetwood BIA opens its doors

Surrey's newest business improvement association to host open house Jan. 28.

Surrey’s newest business group will present itself to the public Saturday with an open house.

The Fleetwood Business Improvement Association (FBIA) will stage its open house Saturday (Jan. 28) at its office at #203-15957 84 Ave.  from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

“It’s our grand opening,” said Amrit Bath, part-owner of Basant Motors and the president of the FBIA. “It’s been a year organizing. Our goal is to create growth in business in Fleetwood, similar to other business improvement associations.”

The new group’s mission, as posted on its Facebook site, is “to improve the area’s branding and image, to address concerns surrounding safety and security, and to promote Fleetwood businesses.”

Fleetwood is the fourth BIA in Surrey, and among more than 50 in British Columbia. Others are Downtown Surrey, Newton and Cloverdale.

Business Improvement Associations are a defined commercial area, where the municipal government collects levies to turn over the BIA, which uses the funds to pay for programs such as promotion, marketing, streetscaping and special events.

Rick Hart, president of the Fleetwood Community Association and a longtime community activist known as “Mr. Fleetwood,” helped launch the association.

Hart, named Surrey’s Citizen of the Year in May of last year, died a few months later in early July.

“Rick was one of the guys to get it off the ground,” said Bath. “He passed away and that’s when I got more involved.”

The Fleetwood BIA boundaries include the area around the intersection of 152 Street and Fraser Highway to the west, and the commercial area around the 160 Street and Fraser Highway intersection to the east.

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