Emily Carr Centre

The Emily Carr Centre will be a landmark destination, a community gathering place, and a catalyst for economic development and innovation. It will be a place where young people grow their love of the arts, and where talented performers create joy for their audiences. A gateway to the West Shore, where people come from near and far to experience professional and amateur performances, develop their skills, learn about cultures, and browse the galleries. Nested in a vibrant, mixed-use urban centre with complementary opportunities, it will provide a home for the thriving West Shore arts and culture communities.

Core facilities would include*:

  • 650 seat theatre, with seating on two levels, and fully equipped with state-of-the-art technical equipment;
  • 240 seat black box theatre/multi-purpose space, equipped with lighting grid and other facilities required to support small performances;
  • dance/theatre studios with high ceilings, natural light, sprung floors and the appropriate acoustics and acoustical separation between spaces;
  • the potential for boutique retail and office spaces;
  • restaurant and event catering operation;
  • coffee house;
  • gallery/gift shop;
  • community house/resource information centre; and
  • exhibition space for community heritage/archive displays.

The Emily Carr Centre will follow a progressive approach to funding its development and operation, to ensure that it is not dependent on local tax dollars. We have named our project after trailblazing Canadian artist Emily Carr, who was a regular visitor to the West Shore in her storied “Elephant” (a caravan/trailer she lived in while painting en plein air). Emily was Renaissance woman who worked in a variety of media. She wrote from the heart, and her every brush stroke echoed the energy-in-motion she observed in nature and the indigenous cultures she came to revere. And like brave Emily, our community will blaze our own trail by building a creative home place for our community that also serves as a shining example of innovation in sustainable building design and operation.

Learn more about Emily Carr’s West Shore connections.

*Building program details will be refreshed with project stakeholders once a project site has been determined.

Project Backgrounder

The West Shore’s quest for a dedicated arts facility has been underway since 2002. Learn about the journey-to-date and how the creative community and dedicated members of the general public have continued to come together in support of this important infrastructure development. 

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