A Cultural Hub For Pictou County

Water Street View

Investing in Our Community Business Plan

At the very beginning of the project we held over 6 consultation sessions in both the town and county with over 200 citizens attending. These sessions included children, youth, families, seniors, library users, and non-users.

When asked what their vision was for a culture hub facility, bringing together a new
public library and an upgraded deCoste Performing Arts Centre, the community put forward
the following themes:

  • A welcoming space for everyone - residents, newcomers, those from any and all ages, backgrounds and abilities.
  • A design that encourages many experiences – cultural, educational, and active.
  • The more experiences available, the more successful the place.
  • A design that celebrates, sustains, and grows artistic development in all its disciplines.
  • A cultural hub to support and grow the creative economy.
  • A place offering opportunities for informal social interaction, organized activities/events and quiet contemplation.
  • A connection between the main street (Water Street) and the waterfront with clear linkages to the surrounding area, especially the Jitney trail and the water.
  • A celebration of the history and cultures of the area through the facility design and abundant public art.
  • A design that is respectful and celebratory of the surrounding architecture.
  • An environmentally sustainable, design incorporating natural features both inside and out, employing leading edge “green” technologies. May include the use of sustainable technologies including VRF (Variable-Refrigerant-Flow) heating and cooling system, solar electrical generation, efficient lighting systems, high degree of insulation and thermal wrapping, extensive daylighting, long-lasting durable materials, and more.
  • A design that fosters a seamless, integrated experience for the visitor. A common entrance/atrium, single entry control desk and abundant shared spaces all contribute to this experience.
  • A busy, active, year-round facility to encourage downtown economic growth.
  • One control desk for both the deCoste and library to foster cooperative, collaborative and efficient service delivery
  • Fully accessible facility achieving Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibility Certification.
  • A design that features ample community meeting and gathering spaces.
  • Exterior presentation and performance spaces suitable for event production with stages, tents, etc.
  • Exterior seating for waterfront appreciation and interaction.
  • A tutoring area for technology training, literacy tutoring, ESL training, etc.
  • A community technology/science learning space with computer access, advanced software, makerspace, robotics kits, science supplies, digital imaging, wireless, and training.
  • A gallery area for monthly art and artisan displays of local and national content.
  • Integrated permanent public art showcased throughout facility (interior and exterior) including work by local artisans.