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More commercial space being developed at Cornwallis Inn

Paul Dixon stands at the entrance to SafeGuard’s new office space inside the Cornwallis Inn. The entrance was formerly used for the building’s liquor store.
Paul Dixon stands at the entrance to SafeGuard’s new office space inside the Cornwallis Inn. The entrance was formerly used for the building’s liquor store. - Sara Ericsson

Project will aim to finish space by summer

KENTVILLE, NS – Thousands of square feet for commercial space are being developed at Cornwallis Inn and should be ready to house new business by summer.

Paul Dixon is the owner of property management company SafeGuard, and is overseeing the renovations on the 7,000 square feet of space that will soon be available for rent.

This comes after other parts of the building were renovated in 2016. 90 per cent of the building’s commercial space is now filled with businesses like a hair salon, a dance studio, a barbershop and a First Aid training company.

“We’ve become a lot more visible since we started, with businesses settling in and doing well. We’re looking forward to this next phase of construction and seeing where it goes,” said Dixon.

The 7,000 square feet is currently in a bare-bones state, with drywall that was just installed for fire separation from upper units, a new heating system and and new electrical.

Dixon is excited for what lies ahead for the 7,000 square feet of new business space to be developed by the summer. “Being part of [this] reinvigoration, cleaning up space that wasn’t usable – it’s a viable space again,” he said.
Dixon is excited for what lies ahead for the 7,000 square feet of new business space to be developed by the summer. “Being part of [this] reinvigoration, cleaning up space that wasn’t usable – it’s a viable space again,” he said.

Dixon says the prepping process will take several months. Once the work is completed, Dixon confirmed his company will obtain building permits by March and the space should be ready for businesses by the summer.

The space will be finished but left open concept for interested parties to view and imagine how they want their commercial layout to look.

“We often build to suit, meaning we build the space to fit the tenant. I have an idea of how I’d separate the units, but that could change, since people will want street frontage and could prefer a different layout,” said Dixon.

SafeGuard itself is now housed within the building, having moved into their new office space just two weeks ago.

The property management company has enjoyed success since being founded two years ago, and now employs 10 staff.

Dixon says prospects for his own business and new businesses setting up shop in Kentville are equally exciting, and a win-win for the town.

“Creating a space and being part of creating new industry in the Cornwallis Inn feels great,” said Dixon.

“Being part of its reinvigoration, cleaning up space that wasn’t usable – it’s a viable space again, as opposed to what it was before. It’s come a long way, and we’re proud of our work.”

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