The Issues

Arts and culture is one of the city’s most important and vital sectors, including all media production. Artists have been forced to leave the city due to loss of affordable working space and venues. Currently, existing older buildings are the main source of affordable creative spaces. Vancouver needs innovative ways to ensure the retention and replacement of affordable spaces for artists. Attracting and keeping artists in Vancouver breeds vitality and ensures Vancouver remains the creative hub of British Columbia. 

TEAM Perspective & Action Plan

TEAM believes it is important that artists have affordable spaces to live, work, practice and perform. 

Vancouver needs to be a destination for artists who should see this city as a supportive and affordable place to work and thrive. Arts and culture support the livable city principles as part of a diverse and resilient local economy that contributes to a vibrant society and public spaces.  TEAM will support and promote creative industries so they can thrive. 

Action Items: 

Priorities to support arts and culture

  1. Support, promote and encourage Vancouver as a creative hub of British Columbia;
  2. Review and encourage program funding for arts and culture;
  3. Support existing events such as The Culture Crawl;
  4. Investigate new initiatives to support and enhance commercial opportunities for artists;
  5. Encourage and facilitate street festivals (Greek Day, Powell Street, Italian Day, Khatsahlano, etc.) which bring the community together;
  6. Support all media production and its related employment, creativity & collaboration with communities & businesses;
  7. Provide an arts and culture page on the City of Vancouver website as a one-stop-shop for all event listings;
  8. Create and publish on the City of Vancouver website an inventory of arts spaces.

Protect and expand arts spaces

  1. Take action to protect and enhance existing affordable performance and arts spaces;
  2. Give incentives for retention and upgrading of creative spaces; 
  3. Create disincentives for demolition or destruction of creative spaces;
  4. Ensure the replacement or retention of creative space by pursuing a one-for-one replacement and retention policy and repurposing existing unused or underutilized City, Park & School Board facilities; 
  5. Encourage minimum space requirements for cultural amenities where neighbourhoods are densifying;
  6. Review the status of civic theatres with respect to affordability and suitability for arts groups.  (For example, the Orpheum and Queen Elizabeth Theatre are expensive; the Playhouse is outdated and in need of modernization.)

Related policies: Planning & Development, Parks & Recreation, Schools