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gasb-featBy Anne Finlay-Stewart

Once upon a time, Owen Sound had the highest number of gas stations per capita in Ontario. Maybe even in Canada. But the "filling station" business just isn't what it used to be, and it is hardly a local phenomenon.

In the past twenty-five years, the number of gas stations has declined almost 40 per cent, from over 20,000 to barely 12,000. The profit per litre at the pump has remained stagnant, environmental safety rules have tightened, and car maintenance services are often delivered elsewhere, at specialty outlets. Big-box stores offering discounts have further squeezed the "corner gas" owners, and the real money now is in the Tim Hortons or other retail offerings. Gas is just the necessity.

Notes-regBy Anne Finlay-Stewart

  • The opening act, Miranda Miller's deputation about the overgrown former BCK property on 1st Ave. W, with a cameo appearance by the police chief and the chorus of councillors apologizing and promising action, went almost until intermission. That drama is well-reviewed elsewhere in The Hub.
  • It was gratifying to hear the Good Food Box promoted in another deputation. This simple, affordable, community-building method of getting fresh fruit and veggies into Owen Sound homes has always been close to my heart.

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