Envision Saint John: The Regional Growth Agency is taking visitor information services up a level by offering a “Welcome Centre” in the new Area 506 Waterfront Container Village. The new centre will offer more than just visitor information by also focusing on the agency’s broader mandate to attract new residents, students, business, and investment.
Envision Saint John continued to operate its traditional visitor information centres throughout the pandemic in 2020 and 2021. With limited visitation, the centres saw an increased demand from recently relocated residents, potential new residents, and others in the community looking for navigation services.
“Our role is to help to not only attract visitors, people, business and investors, but to provide support for those looking to relocate, setup shop or make an investment in our region,” says Paulette Hicks, CEO of Envision Saint John. “We are very excited to pilot our ‘No Wrong Door’ approach at our Welcome Centre in the new waterfront container village.”
Welcome Centre staff will be trained on visitor services and how to redirect inquiries to partners and agencies throughout the region to support a myriad of requests.
The agency is expecting a busy season for the centre with open borders, the resumption of cruise, pent-up demand from locals for festivals and events and record-breaking population growth in the province.
Hicks recognizes that every visitor to our province is also a potential new student, resident, business owner or investor and the region’s value proposition as a leisure destination has never been stronger.
“The potential for our region is endless – over the past two years we’ve recognized the enormous value of our natural assets: a beautiful, historic uptown core, the world-famous Bay of Fundy tides, our interconnected river system, gems like the St. Martins Sea Caves and the Fundy Trail Parkway, and our vibrant Maritime culture. By combining these assets and more, we’ve come together with a new and much more powerful regional value proposition to drive transformational growth.”
Envision Saint John is currently targeting leisure visitors throughout the Maritimes and Ontario through a digital marketing campaign leveraging their popular Discover Saint John & The Towns by the Bay brand.
In 2019, pre-pandemic, the Saint John region produced visitor spending of $282M per year and welcomed 1.7 million visitors.