Art in the Heart proposal

A highly social, active and interactive arts and creativity centre has overtaken the idea of a traditional art gallery as a key part of plans to rejuvenate Invercargill’s inner-city.

The Southland Times reported on Wednesday (29 November 2017) that the Invercargill City Council has decided to put the idea into its Long-Term Plan, opening it up for public feedback.

If approved, construction would go ahead in 2020-2021 on Council-owned land fronting Dee St from the northern part of the under-used Wachner Place, and running back along the northern or Library side of Lower Esk St to border, but not include, the Victoria Railway Hotel in Leven St.

The proposed arts centre  has been given the “placeholder” name ACI signifying ” Art+ Creativity for Invercargill” and was developed by consultant Tim Walker from the extensive Art in the Heart community consultation process.

It would have places for activities, exhibitions, collection access (on rotation from storage) and creative workshops, the Southland Times reported. Large-scale LED screens would be lit, day and night, on outside as well as internal walls, not merely advertising what was within but themselves being part of the art.

The capital expenditure has been estimated at $16 million. The Southland Times said the Council would propose in its plan to commit to a $6.5 million contribution, seek a $5.3 Ministry for Culture and Heritage grant and go to other public and trust funds for an extra $3.2 million, leaving $1 million for an ACI Foundation to raise.

Related links:

Full Southland Times report
Southland Times Opinion: ACI – crackling with creativity