Businesses have few objections to renaming a portion of University Avenue to Great George Street

Alan Preston, owner of Alan’s Hearts and Flowers, prepares an order for a customer on Oct. 4. His business is on the portion of University Avenue in Charlottetown that may be renamed Great George Street. Melissa Heald photo.
Alan Preston, owner of Alan’s Hearts and Flowers, prepares an order for a customer on Oct. 4. His business is on the portion of University Avenue in Charlottetown that may be renamed Great George Street. Melissa Heald photo.
By Melissa Heald
Oct. 5, 2014

Business owner Donna Keenan thinks a proposal to rename a section of University Avenue is a good idea.
The proposal is to change the section between Province House and Euston Avenue to Great George Street.
“I think it could be beneficial to the businesses in the area,” said the owner of Emmett & Ellie’s. Her shop is on that portion of University Avenue.
Sometimes, her area of downtown is left out and the switch could help to promote the area more, said Keenan.
“I find when people get off cruise ships they don’t come this far… They tend to stay on the other side of Province House.”
The lower half of University Avenue used to be called Great George Street. But in 1969 it was renamed, along with Elm Avenue, to University Avenue after St. Dunstan’s University amalgamated with Prince of Wales College to create UPEI.
Now, 45 years later, there is a movement to change that portion of University Avenue back to Great George Street.
But Alan Preston has one concern.
The owner of Alan’s Hearts and Flowers doesn’t object to the idea, as long the background work has been done to make sure the digital aspects of the change on Google and Google Maps are done properly.
“I just don’t want people not able to find us or us not showing up on searches for Charlottetown because the address is wrong,” he said.
However, he still doesn’t see much benefit in the idea either.
“Maybe as far as tourism, or a little bit of heritage is concerned, but business-wise none.”
Adam Johnston, on the other hand, sees a lot of benefits to the name change. The owner of AMJ Guitars agrees with Keenan the renaming can only help small businesses in the area.
“I think it is a good way to define the downtown portion of the street as a smaller and more local business kind of area, instead of being part of the greater University Avenue, which includes Target and Wal-Mart.”
Businesses that have number of items mailed to their location and retailers who deal with suppliers will have to make sure their next delivery has the right address, but he sees more benefits than disadvantages, said Johnston.
“I think Great George being the name of the lower portion of the street is a good thing.”

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