Pandemic’s Gastown cocktail: a mix of hope and despair

Herschel CEO Jon Hoerauf believes Gastown’s vibrancy will return when the tourism sector reopens | Chung Chow

Gastown businesses have seen better days.

The second straight cancelled cruise season means far fewer tourists in the historic neighbourhood, which is filled with a mix of restaurants, souvenir stores and retailers that rely at least partly on customers from cruise ships.

Some business owners, however, are bullish on the area’s future.

With lease rates still relatively high – between $55 and $60 per square foot – it is enough to make business owners re-examine business plans. 

In February, Tyson Reimer closed his high-profile Peckinpah restaurant at the corner of Water and Carrall streets. In

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