My presentation has two sections: the first deals with cultural districts and the second with creative hubs. In each section, I will give an overview, explain the federal contribution, in particular the Heritage Canada programs I am responsible for, and provide examples of investments.
Turning to slide 2, we have an overview of the arts and culture sector. The arts and culture sector is a significant contributor to Canadian quality of life and personal satisfaction, as well as a major contributor to the Canadian economy. In particular, following a recent 2017 arts and heritage accessibility survey, Canadians overwhelmingly believed that arts experiences were a valuable way for bringing people together from different languages and cultural traditions.
As you can see from the figures on the slide, Canadians feel that arts and culture make a positive social contribution to their communities, as well as making positive economic impacts.
I'll begin the formal presentation in two sections: cultural districts and creative hubs. We'll start with cultural districts.
What is a cultural district? Although there is no set definition, a cultural district is traditionally conceived as a well-recognized, branded, mixed use area where a high concentration of cultural facilities serve as an anchor of attraction. Facilities include amenities like performance spaces, museums, galleries, artist studios, arts-related shops, music or media production studios, dance studios, colleges for the arts, libraries, arboretums, and gardens. Because they are mixed use developments, cultural districts incorporate other facilities, such as office complexes, retail spaces, and occasionally residential areas.
The development of cultural districts can happen organically, or they can be engineered by urban planners and municipal governments. In both cases, it is the municipality that has a key role to play in either supporting the construction of the districts, trading permissive zoning regulations for growth, implementing tax or other incentives for cultural organizations in the area, or by officially designating them as cultural districts.
While municipalities play a key role in the establishment or designation of these districts, all levels of government can play a role in the local economic growth and improving the quality of life at the local municipal or regional levels.
We will turn to slide 4.
I will now go over the federal contribution to cultural districts.
A number of federal departments and organizations contribute to the vitality of cultural districts. The three main contributors are Infrastructure Canada, the Department of Canadian Heritage, and the Canada Council for the Arts.
In terms of the broader development of a cultural district, the Department of Canadian Heritage offers programs that invest in the organizations and public spaces that present the main cultural offerings in the cultural districts to the public. I am responsible for two key programs: the Canada Arts Presentation Fund and the Canada cultural spaces fund.
I will now give you an overview of each program.
We will turn to slide 5. I'll begin by giving an overview of the Canada arts presentation fund.
The Canada arts presentation fund supports professional arts festivals and performing arts series to offer activities that connect artists with Canadians in their communities. The program has a permanent $32 million grant and contribution budget, and budget 2016 provided an additional $0.5 million in grants and contributions for an export supplement in fiscal year 2017-18.
The beneficiaries include festivals and organizations of varying size across the country, like the Edmonton Folk Music Festival in Alberta, the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival in Vancouver, Festival transAmériques in Montreal, and the Confederation Centre for the Arts in Charlottetown, and smaller festivals with big local impact like Dance Matters in Toronto and Théâtre de la Ville in Longueuil.
Since the inception of the program in 2001, opportunities for Canadians to attend arts festivals, or performing arts series supported by the program, have tripled to over 600 annually in more than 250 communities across the country. The fund has a direct impact on Canadians; more than 20 million people attend the program-supported festival series each year.
The second program I'd like to give an overview of, on slide 6, is the Canada cultural spaces fund. This program is the only federal program dedicated to cultural infrastructure. It supports the improvement of physical conditions for artistic creativity and innovation. The fund provides support in three areas: the improvement, renovation, and construction of art and heritage facilities; the acquisition of specialized equipment; and feasibility studies related to cultural spaces.
Some examples of organizations that have benefited from the program include the Winnipeg Art Gallery and the Stratford Festival. From 2001 and 2002 until the end of 2017, over 1,700 projects in 436 unique communities across Canada were supported by this fund. Eighty per cent of these communities are in rural, remote, and small urban centres.
In addition to the ongoing investment in cultural infrastructure through this fund, which is $30 million annually, budget 2017 announced an additional $300 million over 10 years, starting in fiscal year 2018-19. This additional investment is part of the investing in Canada plan, which recognizes the role that cultural infrastructure has to play in cities of the 21st century.
Those are the two programs.
In order to illustrate how the federal government supports a cultural district, we'll give you a federal example. We're now on slide 7.
In Canada, we have seen the growth and establishment of cultural districts such as Queen West in Toronto, Granville Island in Vancouver, Sir Winston Churchill Square in Edmonton, and Quartier des spectacles in Montreal. I will use the Quartier des spectacles in Montreal as an example of a cultural district.
The Quartier des spectacles has received support from various governments and organizations to help create a vibrant destination in downtown Montreal. The Quartier des spectacles is a municipally-driven project to recognize, develop, and designate a sector in downtown Montreal as a cultural district. Although overseen by the municipality, the project received support from Infrastructure Canada and the major projects component of the building Canada fund.
To complement this larger investment, the Wilder Building, a dance centre, received $4.7 million in funding from the Canada cultural spaces fund. This support provided artistic organizations with a space for its activities.
Tangente, a long-standing contemporary dance company, is one of those organizations. Tangente received support from the Canada arts presentation fund and the Canada Council for the Arts.
The work of organizations such as Tangente draws the public, local residents, and cultural tourists to the region. The organizations have the ability to present and develop their content because they have financial support for their activities.
Government support is co-ordinated here to ensure that the entire district has the resources and infrastructure required to support the organizations and the public. For their part, the organizations on site have the resources needed to create productions that bring the district to life.
That ends section 1 with an overview on cultural districts.
I'd like to now move over to the second section and topic, which is creative hubs.
Like cultural districts, there is no set definition of a creative hub, but they are conceived and designed to encourage collaboration, innovation, and productivity. They are multi-tenant user facilities involving participants from a range of sectors and disciplines. They include some or all of the following characteristics: shared space, technology, and other resources; opportunities to develop collaboration and to exchange ideas; and public access and programming.
As you can see from the diagram on slide 8, each individual creative hub will strike a different balance of all those elements, which are sensitive to local context and respond to the needs of the creative sector and the broader community. However, it is also the mix of the participants, the availability and diversity of the collaborative spaces, the intent to share skills and talent, and the provision of improved access to specialized and digital equipment that enable creative hubs to foster innovation and growth in the creative sector.
Creative hubs are not a new business line for the Canada cultural spaces fund. Projects with some or all of these characteristics have been eligible for support from that fund. To do so, I would like to illustrate two recent examples we have supported, as shown on slides 9 and 10.
An example of a creative hub supported by the Canada cultural spaces fund is cSPACE in Calgary. It's a renovation project that created a 50,000 square foot incubation facility. It is being used by a wide variety of artistic disciplines, including cultural industries, film production, sculptors, visual artists, theatre, as well as a teaching studio for the Alberta College of Art and Design continuing education program.
cSPACE also emphasizes pure learning strategies and collaboration while also providing space and resources for public presentations. Affordability is a constant barrier for artists, and the building's below market rental rates for studio and office spaces make it accessible to arts and festival groups and other creatively focused entrepreneurs.
There are co-working desks, teaching studios, classrooms for collaboration, workshops and professional development, theatre space, hallway galleries, and a meeting room for public programming. cSPACE encompasses all of the characteristics that we described earlier of a home for tenants from a range of sectors; shared spaces and resources, which is key for the creative community; and a focus on collaboration and public access to showcase their work.
The second example is a recent project that has been approved. It's a New Dawn centre in Sydney, Nova Scotia. The New Dawn Centre for Social Innovation on Cape Breton Island is a renovation project that has taken a convent, and created a creative hub. It has a range of participating disciplines, shared resources, gathering spaces, programs for exchange and collaboration, and public programming in spaces.
The centre, though, takes a different approach to creative hubs, and relates to the specific needs of the community in an effort to support education, innovation, and technology in Cape Breton. New Dawn will create a mixed-use facility with sustainable working and gathering spaces for Cape Breton's creative, innovative, and forward-looking creators. As a centre for social innovation, it will support individuals, businesses, and not-for-profit and charitable organizations working in innovative ways to affect social change. An interesting fact about New Dawn is that nearly 25% of the building is dedicated to collaborative spaces and offices for those outside of the arts and cultural sector. The project is expected to be completed by spring of 2019.
That gives you a good illustration of the proliferation and the projects coming forward in Canada around creative hubs.
Lastly, in support of creative hubs, the Government of Canada laid out its vision for the creative industries in Canada through the creative Canada policy framework. The vision for Canada's creative industries in a digital age framework outlines how the government will support skills, development, innovation, and collaboration by investing in the next generation of cultural spaces, creative hubs.
As stated in the policy framework, creative hubs will help nurture and incubate the next generation of creative entrepreneurs and small business startups. Canadian creative talent will have access to spaces where they can build their entrepreneurial skills, create, collaborate, and innovate, and help generate new markets for Canadian creativity in all its forms.
The additional investments under budget 2017 in the Canada cultural spaces fund will now enable the program to prioritize targeted support for creative hubs in order to advance the creative Canada vision by bringing together professionals from a range of arts or heritage sectors and creative disciplines while always continuing to invest in traditional arts and heritage infrastructure projects that remain part of its core business, such as museums, theatres, and performing arts centres.
To date, the department has secured all of the necessary authorities for the Canada cultural spaces fund to provide an additional $30 million per year for 10 years, and right now my team and I are finalizing the details for operationalizing this investment, beginning in April 2018.
I'll close there.