City Council Approves Grant Towards Creation of BC Artscape

It looks like even more affordable cultural spaces will be created in Vancouver, following the approval today (June 11) by City Council of funding to Toronto Artscape to develop an affiliate organization in BC.  

In support of providing affordable and suitable artist spaces, City Council approved funding of $100,000 per year for three years to the not-for-profit urban development organization that “makes space for creativity and transforms communities.” Artscape is widely recognized as an international leader in creative placemaking.  

Artscape president and CEO Tim Jones told City Council that BC Artscape will be a Vancouver-made organization with a local board of governors and staff responding to a local context. Like Toronto Artscape, its projects will be built with the support of local communities and will function as self-sustaining social enterprises.  

According to the City report, the organization proposes to focus on developing and managing cultural real estate projects of significant scale (30,000 sf or larger), but will also assist in the development of independently-managed, smaller-scale projects by mentoring smaller organizations that aim to develop and operate creative spaces.  

Additional funding to support start-up operations of BC Artscape is being sought from three separate partners at $100,000 each per year for three years, totalling $900,000, with the remaining third coming from the City’s Innovation Fund. Funding via the Innovation Fund is subject to Artscape securing matching funds.

By the end of the three-year start-up period, it is expected that the organization will have managed a number of real estate projects into operation. Opportunities for creating such spaces have been identified in such areas as Granville Island, False Creek Flats and the Downtown Eastside.

The City of Vancouver has made a presentation available on its plans to make space for arts and culture. Download the presentation here:


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