Christina Living Arts Centre opens
Although they are not able to open to the public yet, the Christina Living Arts Centre held its official grand opening last week. Dignitaries gathered for the event, offering their congratulations and lending a hand to cut the ribbon kicking off the first artisans’ gallery of its kind in Canada.
MP Colin Mayes, MLA John Slater, Regional Area C Director Grace McGregor and key project coordinators and contractors were all on hand to celebrate the day. After greetings from the officials present, including a letter from MP Alex Atamanenko who could not be there in person, the ribbon was cut and the crowd of about 100 people was invited into the building to have a look around. There were refreshments and a cake that was a replica of the building so everyone could have ‘their own piece of the Living Arts Centre.’ Bakers Lyn Webster and Audrey White made a very tasty cake for all to enjoy. The Living Arts Centre is the region’s first Leadership in Energy and Ecological Designs (LEED) certified building, meaning that it has been built to stringent environmental standards that start with the roof and go all the way into the design from the geothermal systems underground to the solar aquatic sewage system that is housed outside the main building. The aquatic system is a sustainable water management facility that will be purifying the entire Centre’s effluent in a greenhouse using biological methods with plants and microbes. It is the first artisans’ gallery in Canada to use the LEED standard in its development. The Centre will be open to the public when it receives its occupancy permit, expected soon. As Project Manager, Bob Dupee pointed out; they did not have enough funding to set up all aspects of the interior operations for the building, but will continue to develop the centre in segments as more funding is secured. Along with an internet café, Dupee said they will continue to work towards the full vision for the centre which also includes artisan studios and an outdoor amphitheatre for performances. The Centre is a joint project of the Christina Lake Chamber of Commerce, Christina Lake Arts & Artisans Society, and the Regional District of Kootenay-Boundary. Funding has come from grants from Western Economic Diversification, Southern Interior Development Initiative Trust, regional gas tax, private donations, and Towns for Tomorrow grant. Watch the video for the official opening ribbon cutting and a sneak peak of the interior!