Startup TNT is a community of entrepreneurs, scientists, investors, innovators and startup supporters that gathers every week to have fun, share stories, and improving access to capital for early-stage tech companies.

CUIxUrban Residencies | CUIxYEG (Edmonton) | Local businesses

They achieve this through increasing the pool of professional early-stage investors, educating entrepreneurs on fundraising best practices, and sustaining long-term relationships across all stakeholders.  They raise funds through weekly happy hour events or “beer sponsorship”.

A Toronto restaurant is hiring cosplay delivery drivers

Local businesses

All drivers will be required to take the same strict COVID precautions, and will be masked while doing deliveries.

Edmonton Entrepreneurs Making a Difference

Food | Local businesses | Main Street

Independently owned restaurants, service businesses, retailers, tour operators and experience providers have continued to make Edmonton a place to be proud of, even when business could no longer operate as usual. In fact, many of Edmonton’s trailblazing entrepreneurs have found a way to give back to the community while working to keep their local businesses afloat during these uncertain times. Read on to learn more about the inspiring Edmontonians behind local businesses, and how they are stepping up through creative thinking and a spirit of community. Click here for even more entrepreneurs who are making a difference.

Six approaches to improving the look and feel of the city centre of Bradford (UK).

Local businesses | Main Street | Policy leadership | Re-opening | Street activation
  1. Use empty retail spaces and 1st & 2nd floors to encourage independent shops and to incubate a recycle, repair and regenerate artisanal industry to create a healthy mix of well-designed work/live spaces.
  2. Use available micro spaces to set up pocket parks, as in cities such as Tokyo, Barcelona and San Francisco.
  3. Convert more streets to pedestrian use only, widen pavements on shared streets, and create better links to public transport.
  4. Strengthen alliances with other like-minded groups in Bradford to engage with Council to ensure a generous level of consultation well before important planning decisions are made.
  5. Work with community groups in Bradford to create activity spaces that can be enjoyed by all the city’s communities.
  6. Join with other groups to exchange ideas and learn from experiences.

Ground Floor Pop-Up Toolkit ​ A resource for landlords & storefront activators to create win-win dynamics on the path to recovery from COVID-19

General: Sector resources | Local businesses | Re-opening

Are you interested in creating (or hosting) a pop-up but are not sure where to start?

In the wake of COVID-19 Wallplay has created a toolkit on how vacant spaces can be repurposed for public good. Wallplay has been facilitating pop-ups since 2013, we helped pioneer the “vacant space as pop-up venue” model and we are excited to share what we’ve learned.

Edmonton-based tech company creates digital registration system for office reopening

General: Sector resources | Local businesses | Re-opening

VisitorBay is a digital visitor management tool that allows for an automated sign-in process that is more secure than traditional paper methods. Before COVID-19, the company launched a digital registration system for clients that would see the end of paper sign-in sheets left out in the open for all to see. A few weeks into COVID-19, company founders Brett Carrier and Ricardo Casanova knew there was an opportunity to adapt their product to help companies.

City of Ottawa’s Innovation Pilot Program (IPP) provides companies the opportunity to test and quickly deploy their technology innovations in real-life testing environments with the City or one of its economic development partners

Local businesses | Policy leadership | Recovery

The City of Ottawa’s Innovation Pilot Program (IPP), managed by Economic Development Services (EDS), is shifting its focus towards COVID-19 economic recovery efforts. This new focus, the Recovery Stream, provides companies the opportunity to test and quickly deploy their technology innovations in real-life testing environments with the City or one of its economic development partners. The program provides companies with valuable feedback on their innovations, prior to scaling and production.

Independent movie theatre in Toronto “sells” seats to raise needed funds to survive COVID19-related closure.

Arts and Culture | Fundraising and volunteering | Local businesses | Main Street

To help keep the community engaged and to ensure the Fox Theatre in Toronto’s Beach neighbourhood will still be in business once the virus restrictions are lifted, a fundraising campaign was started by the theatre. For $150, plus taxes, community could purchase a plaque with their name on it to be put on seats at the historic theatre. The Fox posted information about the sale on their website and within a short amount of time all 251 seats were “sold”. The theatre later sold naming rights for other parts of the building.

Transforming a Restaurant into an Outdoor Market using simple furniture designs

Food | Local businesses | Main Street | Street activation | physical distancing

A restaurant in Dallas is coping with the pandemic by leveraging Better Block’s approach to adaptive urbanism. The Better Block crew had constructed several wooden market stalls that were going to be used for a pop-up outdoor market in the Allen project. Now, they’ve used them to turn Oddfellows into an actual outdoor market, stocking the shelves with the restaurant’s stock and selling neighbors staples that may be difficult to find at the stores that remain open.

Slider device allows businesses and customers to interact safely during pandemic

Local businesses

The simple device from a small Coquitlam fabrication company enables two people to carry out a transaction two metres apart.

City of Montreal issues call for proposals for non-profits for the purpose of providing technical support to businesses

Local businesses | Policy leadership

Proposals can address issues pertaining to supply, administrative support, people management, sales systems or other areas. The implemented solutions will help small businesses deal with the challenges from COVID-19.

Mi’kmaq not-for-profit using technology to make medical supplies

Indigenous | Local businesses

A Mi’kmaq run non profit agency is using 3-D printing technology to make medical supplies for health care workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. The 3-D printers are normally in classrooms across Nova Scotia but are now in Halifax printing protective equipment that may be in short supply for isolated communities.

Artists Create Murals on Closed and Boarded up Shops across Main Streets in Vancouver

Arts and Culture | Fundraising and volunteering | Local businesses

Vancouver artists are working together during the COVID-19 pandemic to create some beauty through public murals. Much of the city’s busiest areas have turned into ghost towns and storefronts are being boarded up. But the Vancouver Mural Festival (VMF) is commissioning artists to transform those fronts with temporary works of art.

Library and museum staff helping in seniors’ homes during pandemic

Frontline services | Policy leadership | Public health

More than 50 people who used to work in Bruce County’s libraries and museums have been asked if they could work with seniors instead. To date, the former librarians and archivists have just been screening people as they enter the nursing homes, but they’ll soon be trained to take residents to meals, clean bed pans, organize rooms, and eventually, even answer some call bells.

Regina Public Library putting its servers to use crunching COVID-19 data

Policy leadership

Through a partnership with Folding@home, four of the RPL’s servers and five computers from its Digital Media Studio are hard at work crunching data that scientists around the world are using to research COVID-19.

Canada’s libraries step up to help vulnerable people during pandemic

Food | Frontline services | Housing and homelessness | Policy leadership

In Toronto, nine TPL branches have been converted into food distribution centers in the past few weeks, in partnership with three local food banks. In Montreal the Grande Bibliothèque, the largest library in Quebec has been transformed into a daytime respite space for homeless people.

Canadian Libraries Respond to COVID-19

General: Online communities and networks | Policy leadership

With public libraries across Canada suddenly shuttered in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, library leaders and workers across the country are quickly adapting to still serve people, primarily online. This article describes some of the initiatives across the country of libraries or library staff.

Toronto Public Library (TPL) providing brand new books for children, free of charge, in food hampers being distributing through its pop-up food banks

Food | Policy leadership

When clients visit a food bank at a TPL branch, library staff will add an age-appropriate book for each child in a family who is interested. TPL’s food banks have been set up in partnership with North York Harvest Food Bank, Daily Bread Food Bank and Second Harvest in nine library branches across the city.

 

 

Edmonton restaurants open their pantries to survive COVID-19 pandemic

Food | Local businesses

Eateries now selling pantry staples and toilet paper as dining rooms remain shut

BC outdoor wear companies start making protective gowns for health-care workers

Local businesses

Mustang Survival and Arc’teryx are working with other companies to provide 90,000 gowns in coming weeks.

Alberta companies adapting business models to aid in fight against COVID-19

Local businesses

Featuring companies retooling to produce protective screens, social distancing dots, personal protective equipment, and driving services.

Project Northern Lights brings together Canadians to produce medical supplies

Local businesses | Public health

The project has attracted a small army of developers, engineers and designers, all looking to help fight the pandemic. It has also brought in wedding decorators, seamstresses, film set builders, high schoolers, lifeguards, electricians, illustrators, event planners and auto-glass installers, who just want to pitch in however they can.

The Help List is a non-profit initiative committed to curating the most relevant and meaningful resources for the Canadian Technology Sector

General: Online communities and networks | General: Sector resources | Local businesses

The Help List curating the most relevant and meaningful resources for the Canadian tech sector during COVID19

Employment | General: Crowdsourced tools and resources | General: Online communities and networks | General: Sector resources

The online platform helps connect Canadian tech job seeker with employers; provides industry resources to transition to tech/work from home, and serves as a place for industry supporters to share their services, sessions, resources, etc.

The Coquitlam-based producer of pillows and dog beds is poised to become the first manufacturer of N95 respirators in Canada. Production of medical-grade surgical masks starts on Tuesday, and he anticipates production of N95 respirators will begin within two weeks.

Local businesses

Starting Tuesday, 100,000 medical-grade surgical masks will be rolling off the assembly line daily. Once the second machine arrives, he will be able to produce 100,000 N95 respirators a day as well.

Stepping up during COVID-19: How DMZ startups are finding tangible ways to support those affected by the pandemic

Local businesses

Despite the chaos this virus has created, several DMZ companies (current and alumni) are pushing their traditional boundaries and devoting additional time, money and resources to help those in need. Some startups are cutting platform subscription fees for small businesses, while some are forming charitable partnerships within the community. Others have staff working around the clock to build new functionality to save customers millions of dollars.

Canadian startups quickly pivoting to help combat #COVID19

Local businesses

MaRS-supported startups are banding together against the coronavirus — shifting their everyday business pursuits in hopes of bringing the crisis to a decisive end. This link provides a platform for partnering, procuring or learning more from these Canadian companies

All the ways the University of Windsor’s campus community is working alongside the broader community in response to #COVID-19

Fundraising and volunteering

University of Windsor’s COVID-19 Community Engagement page

City staff, school workers proposing ways to keep themselves busy and services functioning

Frontline services | Policy leadership | Public health

In Winnipeg, library and recreation centre employees, whose jobs have become temporarily obsolete in an unexpected pandemic, are stocking shelves for Winnipeg Harvest, or filling sandbags to save homes prone to spring flooding.

University tech business incubator launches #HACKTHECURVE to help develop solutions addressing COVID-19

Local businesses | Public health

Ryerson University’s DMZ created an online hackathon to facilitate the development of solutions to help address COVID-19. Over a two-week period, teams will develop a technology solution to help curb the virus’ spread. The winner of the challenge will receive $10,000 in cash and an expedited application for DMZ membership.

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