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  • Bolton, Ontario is Restaurant Franchise Death

    Bolton Ontario Restaurants

    You may or may not have noticed but franchise restaurants have been struggling greatly in Bolton, Ontario leaving a long line of failure to the already struggling retail space in the town. Joe Warmington from the Toronto Sun wrote an article about the issue exactly a year ago and not much has changed in a year, in fact its has got worse.

    In the past two years many franchise restaurants have failed such as; Boston Pizza, Coras, William’s Coffee Pub, Little Caesars, KFC / Pizza Hut and there are others that continue to struggle.

    In the case of Boston Pizza, they have managed to re-open under new ownership and appear to be making a better go of it the second time around. Coras hasn’t been so lucky, it has been left vacant and abandoned for over a year now, their lease was terminated with them owing $62,460.63. The owner had put his life savings into the restraunt and has lost everything, Coras failing is a bit odd and cause for concern considering how popular they are throughout the GTA, usually you will find Coras with a lineup out the door they are that popular. Startup franchises like Little Caesars came and went so fast you may not have not even noticed them. For KFC / Pizza Hut it appears they simply gave up after many years in Bolton and are just closing down.

    So what is the problem? Why is Bolton, Ontario Restaurant Franchise Death?

    According to the Toronto Sun article the most likely cause is that Bolton simply does not have a large enough population to support businesses in the town. With 27,000 residents Bolton has enough commercial development to service double that and with no new residental developments on the horizon things are unlikely to improve any time soon.

    Mayor Marolyn Morrison seems mostly unconcerned and dismissive of the concerns of local businesses struggling and failing saying only that “There are plenty of businesses doing very well here too.” and “Businesses don’t always go under because they have a lack of clientele,” she said. “They go under for other reasons, I will leave it at that.”

    According to the town’s official plan Bolton won’t get bigger until 2021 which is a long time away. For the time being franchise restaurants and other businesses will likely continue to struggle and due to the glut of retail space available right now Bolton you likely won’t see any further commercial development which means areas like that large empty field next to Walmart & LCBO will likely sit vacant for a long time.

    Comments

    Comment from franchisehelp
    Time October 1, 2011 at 7:17 am

    Great article and very helpful too. When KFC and Pizza Hut have failed, then its really a bad scene…

    Comment from Anthony
    Time October 12, 2011 at 10:05 am

    I’ve been following your blog for a while now, and thought that it was about time I left a comment. Thanks for the informative posts and great work.

    I’ve wondered for a while what the problem was with franchise food struggling in Bolton and decided that it was purely that the demographic prefers either fine dining or organic/healthy food choices. Who knows because MacDonald’s seems to do well.

    KFC has been struggling across Canada and has had to close multiple locations in general.

    Comment from coopSpeak
    Time November 7, 2011 at 11:21 am

    Why is there is this thinking that the only way to sustain business is to build, build, build and populate? Population explosion without the infrastructure supports (such as social & community services, appropriately number emergency services etc.) is just plain silly. Some problems with franchisees making things work are often more around the actual costs involved in paying their fees and franchise royalties to the “Motherships” of the business. Then tack on the costs of staffing and rent and making money in a franchise, unless you the ilk of a Timmy’s, is highly unlikely of even coming close to breaking even.

    There are many businesses in and about Bolton that have thrived and have done well. Why is it that little breakfast nooks like The Riverside, Kathy’s, the Bolton Cafe or even Soup de Jour are always busy and are highly patronized? How is it that Garden Foods has no problem holding their own against the likes of Zehr’s, Walmart and Giant Tiger? Look at businesses like Baffo’s, House of Chung, Bolton Pizza, Subway, Sushi Date, Cheek’s, Mercatto, The Angry Tomato and even Swiss Chalet who seem to be weathering the recession. Everytime we stop in the local fish ‘n chip spot they are always busy at dinner time? Just recently a new sammie/bakery spot opened up behind the TD Canada Trust in the four corners, appropriately named The Four Corners Bakery and they are doing a booming little business. Why is that?

    When starting up a business potential business owners need to do their due diligence about the catchment of their businesses. It is a common practice undertaken by the large big box stores (Home Depot, Cineplex, Costco, Walmart) all undertake before moving into certain areas. They get caught up the romance of owning and managing their own businesses and being their own boss without fully understanding what it takes to own and operate a business.

    I’d also like to point out that particularly in the retail and food business the mortality rate is very high even in communities that are highly populated such as Toronto, Mississauga etc. There is a restaurant website that lists the openings and closings of restaurants/cafes etc. on a weekly basis. So this whole population argument is a red herring.

    The cheap shot at the Mayor, was just that. A cheap shot. Sounds to me like you are more of mouthpiece that insidious group better known as the Chamber of Commerce. Just saying….

    Comment from Dave Arlotto
    Time January 17, 2012 at 8:59 pm

    I support the local business in fact I put the bartenders thru college

    Comment from Maree
    Time February 1, 2012 at 7:04 pm

    I have lived in Bolton for over 12 years and the biggest problem with the food business is staffing. They struggle with staffing properly because to live in Bolton you must make a competitive wage so staff is all teenagers and the quality suffers because of it. We have 21- 23 year old managers who’s staff is between 16-18 mostly. The experienced staff seem to get fed up and leave to work outside of Bolton for better pay and job security. Quality control is the beggest issue. I have stopped going to most places in town because of this. I actually drive into Vaughan and Brampton to eat. McDonalds and successful business have a solid traing program and won’t accept anything less then exceptional customer service. There is nothing worse then bad sevice. Most unsucessful businesses lack quality control. The untrained training the untrained.

    Comment from Lynn
    Time February 12, 2012 at 11:06 am

    Before you write such scathing articles about Bolton and cut up its mayor and development plan you should do your research first. Maybe there is already a plan in place for that large empty field next to Walmart – such as the promised Go Train station.

    Comment from Scott Templemore
    Time March 14, 2012 at 3:55 pm

    I agree totally that the lack of good service available in these establishments is what makes them fail. A customer will only accept bad service on 1 occasion, maybe 2 if the owners are lucky and then thats it. Personally 1 bad experience is enough to drive me away. Some of these franchises that are still around change ownership so often that no one is around long enough to establish a good reputation in the community. Many of these owners are from outside of Bolton and have no connection with the town, having such a small population its important to maintain a small town mentallity and treat each customer it that way. I ran a business in Georgetown, Ontario approx 15 years ago and was very successful because I knew all my customers by name and made a point of greating them everytime I saw them in or out of business. Thats what made me successful. I go to Bolton and all the new franchises that pop up have no clue how to do business, many are new to the business and many are new to the Country, I wonder how franchises can accept some of these people to represent there company name. It won’t be long before the remaining franchises go down under like Pizza Depot, Wild Wings.

    Comment from New2day
    Time March 23, 2012 at 9:16 pm

    The planning in caledon lacks vision, the plan that has been forced on us isn’t sustainable nor financially viable, it only supports friend of council. The GO station that was mentioned to go beside Walmart will NEVER happen there. Council needs to provide enough of space for 1,000 cars to park plus the building. Coopspeak (Christine Cooper) let the Bolton down when she was on council when we lost a planning decision at the OMB because we didn’t have a phased planning approach for Bolton. this is why Bolton exploded the way it did.

    The Mayor says that a financial analysis was done when the planned growth was developed which is a load of bunk. one of the councillors tried to make them develop a capital renewal plan for all existing town assets but all the Mayor wanted to focus on was committing us to paying 88 million dollars in the dc development which states the development will have to give the town 300 million in development charges.

    Comment from Bolton Business Owner
    Time June 14, 2012 at 2:21 pm

    In response to:
    “Comment from Lynn
    Time February 12, 2012 at 11:06 am”

    Lynn, the city of Bolton makes YOU look foolish…not the writer…it’s now 2012 and there is no GO Station in that lot. In fact the Go Station is now built on Mayfield and Hwy 50 intersection. It’s people with your narrow mind on development that holds Bolton back from thriving. Everyone complains they don’t want to turn into Brampton or Mississauga…last time I checked, these were thriving communities with many jobs and happy residents. The funniest thing I even heard was at a Bolton town meeting talking about expanding Bolton development and a Old Italian man with a very thick accent stood up and said “I donna want immigrants coming to Bolton” I’m sorry but who is the real immigrants! LOL this town is a complete joke with no vision for growth lead by a Mayor who has no backbone for change and cannot inspire her clearly uneducated community to do anything but be stuck in the 1980’s…the biggest accomplishment thus far is WalMart – congrats on your accomplishment Bolton!

    Comment from Bolton Resident
    Time August 4, 2012 at 7:18 pm

    Just like everything in this world, supply and demand natural defines an equilibrium. There is sufficient demand for a certain level of businesses to be profitable. IF (which I dispute) the Town of Caledon is not business friendly because of the democratically determined development decisions, eventually enough businesses would leave the Town and prices would increase (due to lack of competition). Organically, the balance between supply and demand would be determined.

    Same situation applies for home prices. As long as there is healthy demand for housing relevant to the available supply of homes, the prices will stay healthy. Most people in Bolton happily CHOOSE to live in the Town because of the quality of life and not lament the fact that many inferior, mass-produced food franchises are unable to maintain a foothold in the Town.

    Comment from Andrew
    Time August 7, 2012 at 3:07 pm

    Forget the franchises, when the going gets tough and they have to close the doors they don’t care about the community or employees, they pack up and take off, I was an employee at Cora’s when they closed and i was told, when i was 17 years old and recently offered an executive chef position, that i was not going to recieve any of my pay. 17 years old saving for school and out over $1,000 to a franchise that wasn’t concerned about anything but putting cash in there pockets. 2012 and still havent recieved a thing, i know i never will but for god sakes!!!! Dont feel bad for the franchises or the owners who pay these huge fees, they know what there getting into before hand, the fees aren’t a surprise. The only vicitm’s here were the hard working mothers, fathers, and students that were left out to dry with nothing not even a good article to bash the lack of human resources crew that told countless employees, its not our responsibility.

    Comment from Pat K
    Time August 10, 2012 at 6:09 pm

    I heard that they are building a second Walmart & grocery store on the North Hill next to the Caledon Community Centre, across from where the Woody Lumber use to be ( now a Motorhome place) Does anybody know if thats true or not?

    Comment from Anne Regent
    Time August 21, 2012 at 8:49 pm

    They’ve been talking about a grocery store on the North Hill almost as long as they’ve been talking about a Bolton Bypass. hahahahaha
    IGA was here – gone NoFrills was here-gone as were several attempts at grocery/fruit markets in the downtown. There is not enough of a customer base in Bolton to support another supermarket and I would be totally surprised if one ever materializes. Another thing that makes me laugh is the people who say “we moved here for the small town atmosphere, we don’t want Bolton to grow” Newsflash – we never wanted Bolton to grow before you moved here. Bolton was just fine when there was nothing west of Station. south of Allen, east of Humberlea/Old King/Newlove or North of Bolton Heights. About 20 years ago, before the development started. Now, they’ve started – why not finish it? Let the town grow to support all of the businesses that were promised a population base. As for me, time to go further north!

    Comment from Bolton Resident
    Time August 25, 2012 at 1:11 pm

    The lot beside WalMart is owned by Loblaws and was originally supposed to be a Real Canadian Superstore replacing the Zehrs back in 2005. They cancelled that plan for numerous reasons, unfortunately, but I believe they still own the land. The GO Train Station will be somewhere on the west side of town, and not for a number of years, unfortunately.

    Comment from mildan
    Time August 31, 2012 at 9:22 pm

    a comment about KFC…. the original KFC that was beside Garden Foods was excellent. The food was fresh, the restaurant was clean, the service was friendly and because of these factors the restaurant was always busy. After it moved and became a “Ken-Taco-Hut” it sucked. When we craved kfc we would drive right by it on our way to a KFC location that was out of the way but still maintained high standards. Bolton is great. Its a free country. If u don’t like it.. MOVE

    Comment from Dan O’Reilly
    Time October 13, 2012 at 9:37 am

    I take strong exception to your suggestion that Marolyn Morrison is unconcerned about the fate of the business community. The comments are, in fact, absolute nonsense. The moderate growth planning policies of the Town of Caledon were endorsed by the majority of residents who voted for her re-election in the fall of 2010. There a number of reasons businesses fail including poor service, bad planning, and little or no market research–which might have indicated these businesses had little chance of succeeding

    Comment from R.M
    Time October 19, 2012 at 1:18 pm

    I have to agree, a lot of these franchises are giving away there name to anyone who can come up with money. What do they care? Get there franchise fee and advertisment % and be done. No research is done on the location, its population and wants. Even McDonalds does surveys before opening a new location. Another issue is the service standards of these establishments. Some of these new franchise owners have no experience on running a business, I’ve been to several restaurants where the owner is at the mercy of there staff because they have no clue on how to run a business. Take for example Wild Wings. The establishment first opened in 2007 by the franchise founders sister if I’m not mistaken on that date. Since then there have been several change of hands, some owners who could careless because they had multiple locations to the present owner who has never even been in a kitchen, let alone own a business! Now how is this owner suppose to support the staff and teach them about customer service when they don’t know anything about it themselves. Sure there is 1 week training provided by the franchise, but be realistic, with 0 experience is 1 week going to teach someone how to run a business? Probubly not. There is a reason why Tim Horton’s will not just give anyone with money a franchise. But still businesses open and close throughout Bolton for all of the same reasons. I’ve just gotten fed up and stopped going back to these places hoping that they get it right one day. I stick to all the mom and pop shops and restaurants where I know the owners and know what level of service I can receive.

    Comment from RG
    Time November 2, 2012 at 3:00 pm

    I agree with some of the comments that the businesses that have failed were not necessarily due to the lack of people but probably due to crappy food and service. We have enough of the lower end/pub food restaurants. Give us a Milestone’s/Jack Astor’s or Turtle Jack’s and I guarantee they will do well. We need a family friendly restaurant that doesn’t just serve burgers and french fries. I noticed in the lot where Taco Bell and KFC used to be and they’re building a Starbucks and Subway, sure lets add a 3rd one in town. There was something else but I couldn’t read the sign, hoping it’s something good!

    Comment from Angela
    Time November 7, 2012 at 12:52 pm

    Wild Wings in general has been getting worse and worse, there fear of American giant Buffalo Wild Wings has prompted them to open as many franchises as possible without any regard for customer service or who owns them. As a past employee of Wild Wings Bolton let me tell you that the service is horrid, it has nothing to do with the staff but they way the owner make us do things that give us wait staff a bad name. Often beer from a tap will pour out with a lot of head, same goes for an almost empty keg, we keep that beer aside and mix it for customers ordering pitchers later on. We reuse the same glass for drink refills, not like other restaurants that bring you a new glass on a refill then take your old glass away. If a wrong order is sent out, for example the wrong flavor, a new order is not put in, instead the cook is left to re-season them and make them like they were suppose to be. With service like that how do you expect anyone to come back??

    Comment from Joe
    Time November 8, 2012 at 10:09 am

    My wife moved to Bolton four years ago from Woodbridge when I retired. We dine out frequently but most oftain go back to Wodbridge. In my opinion the franchises mentioned in the article that have failed in Bolton deserved to fail. For Gods sake how many people in the Bolton community wanted to spend almost $20.00 for breakfast by going to Cora’s ? (by the time you add taxes and tip it was close to that. Yes they make a go of it in a larger community but setting up in Bolton was doomed from the start. We frequently drive to Nino D’aversa bakery for pizza may I suggest that the establishments in Bolton visit there and learn what real pizza should taste like (certainly not Little Caesars or Pizza Hut. We have a small group of friends and family living in Bolton and if the local establ;ishments want our business, quality has to improve huge greatly.

    Comment from Jo-Ann
    Time November 12, 2012 at 7:27 am

    In the case of all these failing franchises its not the demographics that are making them fail, its the overall quality of service that has left them to fail. While your owners tactics (in response to former Wild Wing employees remarks about the owners rules) may work in larger cities and busier restaraunts we the people of Bolton demand better service. We are a close nit community and have always expected better service because we have always gotten it. I just stop going to the franchises in Bolton, if were going out its one of the local eateries in town or we just drive to Brampton or Vaughan.

    Comment from Mary
    Time November 26, 2012 at 9:57 am

    I’ve been to the Wild Wings in Bolton. Service seems to be a huge issue there. I can understand the replies regarding the issue being service and management as oppose to the food quality itself. Just going online and reading the reviews on this place really sets off alarms to the level of service this restaurant is providing. Since Boston Pizza has been under new managment it has stepped up and been able to provide much better service then before. I wish other establishments like Wild Wings could follow there example.

    Comment from mildan
    Time November 27, 2012 at 3:45 pm

    in response to “bolton business owner” Mississauga and Brampton are thriving and that is great for them. What does that have to do with Bolton?! As for comments about “the old Italian man and his heavy accent” I consider your comments ageist and disturbing. Do you consider Boltonites/Boltonians “clearly uneducated” because we don’t want to live in Brampton? You don’t get it -at all- I only wish I knew what Bolton business you own so I could boycott you and then watch you leave and complain about business in town. Don’t live in, or do business in a town you don’t love. We are clearly educated on one front and that is quality. Please let us know when your business fails so we can wave buhbye

    Comment from Wendy
    Time March 28, 2013 at 11:40 am

    In my opinion, bring the trees, open land and farms back. Keep the franchisees out, along with the tacky tatoo and 100 coffee shops and bring back mom and pop folks. REALLY??? I have no problem driving for a good meal, great service all without breaking the bank. Gone are the days when establishments hired “GOOD'” staff or found people/kid that wanted to “WORK”.

    Comment from Maggie
    Time March 28, 2013 at 1:20 pm

    I think that the little places such as soup de jour, riverside, sushi date al have amazing customer service which is why they stand out and have been successful. Looking at riverside, there is a capacity in the establishment for maybe 30 people at most but it always has people in there and the owner talks to you every single time regardless of who is caching you out. At soup de jour, the staff always ask me about how y day is going and they care. They will do whatever they can to make my experience better. I think the establishments like these are more important to support rather than Kelsey’s, Harvey’s, and all the other restaurants. No disrespect to these larger establishments but there is a huge focus on those large companies rather then the handful that were born and raised in Bolton.

    Comment from Rob
    Time March 29, 2013 at 1:51 pm

    I’ve been a Bolton residence for almost 3 years now. I have nothing bad to say about it. Great town. Great people. Great place to raise a family. If you drive east on mayfield and pass hwy 50 past the Toyota delearship you will see lots of vacant land on the right side. I really wish they would build a small sub division there. I’d love to buy a bigger home and stay I the greatest town

    Comment from Rob
    Time March 29, 2013 at 1:52 pm

    Bolton rules

    Comment from Anne Regent
    Time April 7, 2013 at 10:49 am

    Rob – The land on the east side of the Townline is in Vaughan, not Caledon. The subdivision that was touted to these poor business owners (including all of the unoccupied business units in the south end) was to go on the west side of Coleraine between Healey and Mayfield. All of a sudden, the development was changed to the Kennedy/Mayfield area. Now where do those people do their shopping? Brampton of course! What is our Mayor proposing for the Coloraine ccorridor? A Canadian Tire distribution centre! Let’s see, an unfinished bypass, infrastructure deemed unable to support additional population no transit system? I think the real reason was that the subdivision proposed affordable homes ($300K range). Caledon seems much more disposed to approving subdivisions of homes between high $400K and $2M. Lots of estate homes going up, You see those under construction everywhere you look!
    To Rob, just wait a while, you will become as jaded as I have in the last 20 years.

    Comment from Rob
    Time April 7, 2013 at 12:51 pm

    Hi Anne. Do you think Bolton will ever expand with new homes. I heard they will possibly lift a ban to build homes in 2021. What do you think is wrong with Bolton. And do you think it will become like Brampton one day? Or stay a smaller town?

    Comment from Mike
    Time May 15, 2013 at 10:14 pm

    First of all, there is WAY too much retail space available in Bolton for the size of the town. EVERYTHING IS VACANT! Walmart and Home Depot killed the small businesses in that town. The mayor is completely asleep wrt leadership. COMMERCIAL PROPERTY TAXES keep increasing significantly annually which is also killing the small businesses. Landlords are offering free rent and payment just for TMI in order not to have vacancies. There are no new businesses being opened. Any “new” openings are re-openings of any small business that has remained and is just moving to another location. It’s basically “recycled” businesses that are moving from one location to another location. LOWER THE COMMERCIAL PROPERTY TAXES AND STOP BUILDING COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE OR ALLOW MORE HOUSING TO BE DEVELOPED TO SUPPORT THE BUSINESSES IN THE TOWN. IT’S SIMPLE ECONOMICS…SUPPLY AND DEMAND.

    Comment from Rob
    Time May 16, 2013 at 7:02 pm

    I hope that one day they do expand with residential one day. I also think some o the current plaza’s on hwy 50 near zehyrs could use a facelift

    Comment from Susan
    Time May 21, 2013 at 10:13 pm

    I would like to see Bolton releasing a new subdivision soon also. I don’t want it to get too big but would really like to move to a new house soon.

    Comment from would be business owner
    Time June 15, 2013 at 8:15 am

    Now i dropped the idea of buying a business in bolton after eading comment!!!!

    Comment from Kevin
    Time June 20, 2013 at 4:06 pm

    As a resident of Caledon for 23 years that includes my entire life I can speak as to why certain establishments don’t do well in this town.

    It seems Italian places last because of all the Italians in the town, anything else usually is left to struggle.

    Garden Foods only survives because of Italians, that grocery store is too over-priced to last anywhere else. As well the fact Italians are so buddy buddy with eachother and rude to anyone else doesn’t hurt either.

    My biggest problem with this town is people who weren’t born here, have no ties here, yet think they can have the right to complain about keeping the town small.

    I live in Palgrave, grew up in Bolton, and want more development. I wish there had been more people growing up, and am kind of sick and disgusted in the secluded Italian community in this town. This town needs more flavour, more immigrants, and more people. I am sick of living in a hick version of Woodbridge, and welcome ANY new comer to this town that isn’t Italian because at least then we can start to build a community that is for everyone and not one ethnicity.

    Sorry, but the fact any of the Italian places have survived here is due to demographics.

    I wish the Mexican food place was still here, I wish Cora’s was still here, I wish there was more variety to our overabundance of pasta and pizza.

    CALEDON NEEDS IMMIGRANTS AND DEVELOPMENT, WE ARE IN CANADA NOT ITALY.

    Comment from mildan
    Time June 20, 2013 at 11:31 pm

    dear Kevin,

    I’m so sad to hear that you have directed your anger, hatred, and frustration with and of yourself towards a beautiful community. Italian culture is so full of love and campassion that we can allow you to see us as your enemy so you don’t have to face the truth o
    of your heart and it’s pain. of course what your saying is incorrect as many non Italian places do very well. Italian hospitality to ALL is well known around the world so maybe a lesson can be learned about how to treat Patrons by frequenting successful Italian shops and studying their philosophies and work ethic. good luck to you Kevin.

    Comment from Rob
    Time June 21, 2013 at 9:23 am

    To kevin

    First off your an ignorant s.o.b. this isn’t about Italians or any immagrints at all. One thing I will say is at least Italians take care of their homes and make Bolton look decent. It’s all the hicks that think they live in a farm in a subdivision that give Bolton a bad name. And don’t go to garden foods. Go where ever you like. I go their, and it’s funny you say that, because every time I’m in garden foods it’s Canadians who ae shopping. Hmmmm. Makes you wonder eh!!! I agree we need more people so business will begging to flourish. Did you ever think that Bolton was meant to be a small town with few restaurants and stores. All the local mom and pop shops seem to be doing fine. It’s like buying a 7 seater van and have no kids. Geeee I wonder why the van is always empty

    Comment from Jeremy
    Time July 4, 2013 at 1:48 pm

    Hey Kevin, wake up and get a reality check…Did an Italian girl dump you? Take the issue off Italians and take a good lok at supply and demand…

    I agree with the other guy you are an ignorant S.O.B…watch what you say, and who you direct it towards…By the way, I’m not even Italian.

    Jeremy

    Comment from Rob
    Time July 4, 2013 at 6:35 pm

    Thanks Jeremy. Finally some one with brains

    Comment from Bolton Resident
    Time July 5, 2013 at 7:18 pm

    While I don’t completely agree with Kevin, he’s not completely wrong. When I describe Bolton it’s Little Woodbridge, and a lot of my Italian friends that live here agree. It’s not necessarily bad, and I agree with Kevin it is a reality of the community. Italians are not to blame for Bolton’s retail woes….poor planning and development are the culprits, but I don’t think calling someone an ignorant SOB for making a valid observation is really necessary.

    Comment from Rob
    Time July 6, 2013 at 12:54 pm

    Sorry about using s o b. it is a bad word and should not be used. However, I felt that he was being ignorant towards Italians. Italians are not to blame for boltons industry woes. And I feel it was unesassary to talk about Italians like that. It’s obvious he has something against us Italians. Bottom line don’t go to garden foods if your not happy with it. Ad the way it’s run. Italians might pay a bit more of products there but they are not stupid. The go there for a reason. Maybe they are treated well by the staff. Infact, I went today to purchase flowers for my garden and was amazed by there service. So maybe these big box stores that don’t survive in Bolton need to better there customer service. I’d rather pay a bit more but be treated well. Rather than pay a bit cheaper and be treated like just another number

    Comment from vintages
    Time January 19, 2014 at 5:42 pm

    Did anyone ever consider that folks move away from the City to get away from it’s busyness and population. Bolton has enough business to support the current population. We don’t need more population to make it better. If you want to live in a City environment then move to the City or a bigger suburb

    Comment from RM
    Time May 9, 2014 at 9:52 am

    And so goes another Bolton franchise. Wild Wings has closed its doors once again. No sign on the door explaining what has happened. Can’t say I’m surprised.

    Comment from kate
    Time June 5, 2014 at 9:58 pm

    I have to agree with a lot of the comments, I grew up in Nobleton where everything was a ‘pizza and panini’ and they closed right and centre minus the fantastic bakery on 27 which has moved 3 times I can remember, simply for such a small population how man do you need and it will come down to quality and service. I’m just over the hill in bolton on the border with caledon so I take usually all my business to bolton. I don’t see an abundance of Italian restaurants from above comments is it a little version of ‘old’ woodbridge cause a lot of italians are moving out, but that hasn’t hurt anyone. The problem is there is too many generic ‘american’ eateries kelsey *blah* crabby joes *loved but switched owners so many times the food suffered* boston pizza *crappy pizza* swiss chalet (always consistently good). I wish I could say bring in more restaurants etc but I mean this year alone boston pizza, baffo’s, wild wings so many business’ have closed it’s simply supply and demand. The italians moved in cause woodbridge got too big, too busy and rift raft from toronto came in and it hasn’t been the same or to be honest the safe raise your family area. People come to Bolton, Nobleton, Palgrave, Caledon from a safer, quieter area, more small town feel. So why over pack a small town with a lot of un-needed business’? When the population drastically increases then sure bring in the business but at the same point do we want every acre of untouched land ruined? I don’t know about anyone else I like the small town feel but I bring my business where the service is good and where the product is good why I will even pay more at garden foods the deli is better, the produce lasts longer I pay for quality. Just me but every small town business’ and franchises suffer it’s how it is, everyone wants to open a cupcake shop, restaurant, pub, over priced clothing store and there just isn’t the demand. Some people want to live in a small town and drive to the larger cities for work, shopping etc. I don’t think people moved to bolton for it to be like brampton/woodbridge/mississauga because from what i see they all move away from the big cities. I love bolton and the small surrounding cities stop trying to bring junk in!

    Pingback from Bolton, Ontario is Restaurant Franchise Death – 2014 Update | Inside Caledon, Ontario
    Time August 5, 2014 at 5:12 pm

    […] in 2011 I wrote about the state of food franchise business in Bolton, Ontario and how things looked bleak. Fast forward […]

    Comment from Danny
    Time January 7, 2015 at 7:07 pm

    The problem is it’s Bolton, and Bolton fucking sucks. It’s smaller than a rats ass and there’s nothing to do. All these places are out of business because nobody wants to go. I’m ashamed to call it my hometown.

    Comment from ROGER S
    Time April 19, 2015 at 10:18 am

    HI residents of Caledon I have been a resident of Bolton for 44 years lots of people know me and I know lots of people the problem here folks is Bolton the oldest community in Caledon should have grown when the old Mayor shamboozled everyone and moved all business and development too Mayfield West a town that didn’t exist before 2006 when Bolton has been around since 1845 you should have known something was wrong there these are all old farm families that know each other its about were land will get developed on whos farm in Mayfield West will sell for millions and who is going too help them in town politics too get it developed it has nothing to do with the way the business are set up in Bolton places like Baffos Pizza House of Chung they were in Bolton 40 years plus gone there used to be a place called Frank and Helens gone and a ton more places and a recent town meeting too do with development in Bolton for the now almost finished Canadian tire warehouse Mayor Morrison had the OPP there too throw out any buddy that tried too speak there mind and then days later secretly sent letters too the Ontario Government too have this building passed with a MZO order blocking any input from anybody and allowing CDN tire too Build now try and open a Mom And Pop biz in Bolton watch the red tape you go through there are corrupt individuals at work here with millions of dollars in farmland that want a piece of the pie nothing too do how a lot of good business not just good Restaurantshave closed in this town Your town council will have Bolton be the trucking Capital of Ontario in the next ten years guaranteed if you think you see trucks on 50 now you wait you have not seen nothing yet it will triple warehouses for Bolton houses and retail for Mayfield West that’s there plan more restaurants will close in Bolton AS for the comment that dumb fuck Kevin made I am a Proud Italian Canadian u probably know me I am known in the community there are a lot of hard working Italians that have made Caledon there home for 50 years are u ok making racist comments like that seek help my friend wishing you all peace and prosperity thank u for reading my post

    Comment from Peter_in_West_Coventry
    Time April 19, 2015 at 3:03 pm

    I’m rather disgusted at the mean tone of about 2/3’s of the comments, especially the more recent ones. Please be nice and respectful of one another.

    I’ve lived in Albion, now Caledon, and in the Bolton area for 50 years. I’ve seen Bolton grow from a population of 1200. Do you know that there still are businesses open from back then? Carmine’s barber shop, now third owner, for example.

    The #one main reason businesses fail is bad management. Don’t blame the customers, don’t blame the town.

    No, we don’t need more development, more population. That solves nothing, only creates more problems.

    Main Street Station was Bolton’s first pub in a long time (the Riverside was a restaurant that had a liquor licence, but you had to order food in order to get a beer, today it is the Black Bull). It was wildly successful at first because it had no competition. But, service was awful. Every girl in Bolton who ever wanted to work in a bar did work there, until they all quit. They had to get people from Alliston and Angus to work there. Of course, they took out their frustrations on the customers. Meanwhile, Barry, the owner of the Black Bull, is there almost every night, and his business is good.

    There’s another small restaurant which I didn’t know existed, east side Hwy 50 south of McEwen, its Lebanese. Hah, I bet you didn’t know either! He spent a fortune on the interior and nothing to bring attention to passers-by that his restaurant is there. No advertising. How long will it last?

    Garden Foods is not the overpriced place some people claim. I shop there for almost all my groceries, and I’m not Italian, but because the prices and selection are the best anywhere. (But Bolton Zehr’s beats any Loblaws in Toronto!)

    The empty lot beside Wal-Mart, alongside the tracks, really ought to be the Bolton GO rail station, not somewhere 15 km out of town as they are proposing. Why does it need 1000 parking spots? That’s completely unrealistic. Bolton needs much better public transit. Did you know that GO will NOT take you to Pearson Airport from Bolton? If we are not going to have restoration of passenger rail to Bolton, then how about an LRT, which at least runs past Pearson?

    Comment from Long-time Caledon Resident
    Time May 26, 2015 at 11:17 am

    Wow!!!
    How does an article about failed franchises lead to personal and ethnic attacks? Unlike others who have commented, I am proud and content to live in Caledon. I have resided in this area for 48 years. I have seen many businesses come and go, but I find that quality and service play a huge roll in whether or not a business survives the test of time.
    Caledon is not mainly full of “hicks” or “Italians” but is instead a mixture of cultures just like the rest of Canada. What is different about this area is that many residents are caring and committed to their community. We know our neighbours and actively participate in events that promote both business and residents. Caledon is a wonderful location to raise a family or to retire in peace and quiet. We are fortunate that Caledon is a close knit area and that it has held the honour of being the safest location in Ontario for the past 6 years. I believe this record is due to the fact that there is little transit to connect the area to larger more crime-ridden spots and the fact that our residents prevent misadventure by being diligent in their watch of their neighbourhoods.
    Having said my piece on that, I would like to address the issue of failing businesses in Bolton. Several businesses have flourished for many years in this area. Some examples are: Baffo’s, The Wishbone, Cheeks, Bolton Florist, House of Chung and others. If you notice, none of these are franchises. What these retail establishments offer is quality product and service coupled with friendly sincere relationships with their customers. They aim to please and they develop an honest rapport with all that pass through their doors. Their product is always consistent in quality and that generates piece of mind with the client. If there is a special occasion or need from a customer they are quick to accommodate and often go the extra mile. Unfortunately this relationship is not always available at a franchise. Your product quality and level of service depend on the employees working at any given time. The other problem with a franchise is that they are often supplied with product that they are allowed to serve so if that quality diminishes then they have no control over the choice of what they offer the client.
    I would like to discuss the closure of Baffo’s compared to that of Cora’s or Wild Wings. Aldo and Charlie built Baffo’s from a mere take out spot to a thriving local eatery that I frequented at least once a week for well over 30 years. The prices were reasonable and the food and service quality was great. Bafo’s hired teenagers over the years, but trained them properly and maintained their quality control while doing so. Many employees stayed there for decades because they were taught the ropes by people that had commitment to their business and clientele. Many thought that Baffo’s failed because they expanded. I beg to differ on this point as I believe it occurred after Charlie retired and Aldo needed an additional manager. This manager was from the Hamilton area and knew nothing of the area or its custom. He wasn’t around to experience the slow and steady growth of the business and what made it successful. Granted he came in with innovative ideas, but he changed what made them a success. I was excited at the expansion and truly happy that it was growing yet again, but when I discovered that everything (right down to the tomato sauce) had been changed I was truly disappointed. Pizza went from the classical oven treatment to a conveyor belt product and the menu was so far removed that I could no longer find a decent meal that suited my needs. Unfortunately they lost my business and as I discovered lost many others as well. The new manager took for granted that the area residents were trendy and wealthy and therefore tried to take advantage of these factors. This was the beginning of the end…a sad, sad day. Now the failure of Wild Wings and Cora’s cannot be compared to that of Baffo’s as they were never fully established in the community. Both places suffered from the lack of knowledge about the area that they were entering and offered over-priced or poor quality product and service. These are the reasons that businesses fail in Caledon. Our residents demand the quality, customer service and consistency that many franchises can’t offer.
    The residents of Caledon are educated and selective. I believe that everyone works too hard to earn their money to be mistreated or served low quality meals or product. Quite often we are eating out as a treat and we want this to be an enjoyable experience all round. If an establishment can’t realize the needs of the patrons then they deserve to fail. I also believe it is the right of the customer to choose their preference and boycott establishments that treat us like just a number or a dollar value.
    Thanks for reading my opinions and I hope I have cleared up some issues about the success and failure of franchises here in Caledon.

    Comment from Colton
    Time July 15, 2015 at 3:23 am

    I live in Mississauga and have worked in Bolton for twenty years. Love it. The population is just too small to have multiple same food businesses. Most people welcome eating choices so having a couple similar restaurants is reasonable. One burger joint, pizza, sub, fried chicken, Chinese, sushi and others will always survive. Dare to compete? Well, your establishment better bring quality service. As mentioned previously the towns restaurants are flooded with youth labor. I’m not certain this is bad nor good. The issue has its pros and cons. Eventually the city will be left with the best of the best. As the guy named Kevin secretly admitted the town needs more Italians to continue populating the neighbourhoods. They have done well for its delicious growth. Geez, now I’m hungry for a bowl of pasta.

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