The governments of Canada and Nova Scotia and the Town of Pictou announced $9 million in funding for the redevelopment of the deCoste Centre as a cultural hub.
“The deCoste Centre has been a fixture on the Pictou waterfront for over 35 years. The investment we are making today will establish an expanded cultural hub with a performing arts centre and brand new public library that will make our community a more vibrant and dynamic place to call home for a generation. I want to offer my thanks and congratulations to everyone at home who helped make this project happen,” said Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship and MP for Central Nova.
The Government of Canada is investing $6 million for this project. The Government of Nova Scotia is contributing $2 million. The Town of Pictou, the Municipality of the County of Pictou, and the community at large are providing over $1 million.
“The new cultural hub will transform the downtown core of Pictou and the surrounding community. Both the deCoste Centre and Pictou Library are invaluable community spaces that provide important services to residents and visitors. And both venues are ready to grow. They’re ready to attract residents and visitors to enjoy high-quality social and cultural experiences,” said Nova Scotia Premier Tim Houston.
Funding will support improved facilities that will serve the Pictou community—and those who visit—for years to come. The deCoste Centre will be expanded to 23,000 square feet to become a cultural hub, hosting a new modern public library, a fully renovated theatre, visual arts exhibition facilities, and meeting space for other cultural and community groups. The new cultural hub will also have accessibility features to make it more inclusive. Improvements will include the complete replacement of dated electrical, plumbing and HVAC systems, making it net zero ready.
“This year marks the deCoste’s 40th anniversary. This enhanced facility ensures an even more successful future. Pictou will have one of Nova Scotia’s most innovative cultural facilities. We are bringing two champions of community inclusion, engagement and programming together. Even before the building is under construction, we have found many new ways to partner with the library and the community is seeing the benefits. Together we will be a force for positive change. The sum will be much greater than the parts,” said Troy Greencorn, executive director of the deCoste Centre for Arts and Creativity.
“Public libraries are so much more today. Not only are they places of reading and learning, but active social spaces with meeting rooms, technology centres, and outdoor gathering areas. This funding turns a community vision into reality,” said Dan Currie, chair of the Pictou-Antigonish Regional Library.
“This enhanced and upgraded facility for arts and creativity shows how organizations can work together for a common purpose impacting all our citizens, now and in the future. Thank you to all levels of government for supporting this project and moving the dream to reality,” said Jim Ryan, Mayor of the Town of Pictou and co-chair of the Project Working Committee.
“This combined facility will be a great benefit to our many rural communities. We know our county is a great place to live and raise a family, but this kind of project makes it even more attractive. A very worthwhile investment from all 3 levels of government,” said Robert Parker, Warden for the Municipality of Pictou County and co-chair of the Project Working Committee.
Featured image: (L to R) Pictou Mayor Jim Ryan; Dan Currie, chair, Pictou-Antigonish Regional Library; Troy Greencorn, executive director, deCoste Centre for Arts and Creativity; Crystal Murray, chair deCoste Centre; Sean Fraser, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship and MP for Central Nova; Karla MacFarlane, Minister of Community Services and MLA for Pictou West; Premier Tim Houston; Robert Parker, Warden, Municipality of Pictou County (Communications Nova Scotia)