While the West’s cultural institutions are strong, there are virtually no performing arts and cultural spaces. There is an emerging need for a creative arts and industries precinct, based on a range of arts and creative industries that already exist in Maribyrnong.
Creative West (formerly known as NeXT: Footscray Library, Community and Cultural Hub) is a proposed performing arts and cultural hub for the west. Creative West will be the anchor to support and complement existing arts and creative industries, including the Footscray Community Arts Centre, improving access to a range of cultural spaces, currently lacking.
The proposed development will include a large-scale flexible performance/events venue, a library and learning hub, integrated spaces for arts and community groups and gatherings.
It will provide the community, artists and creatives’ access to the latest technology for learning, artistic and cultural pursuits.
Proposed to replace the current Footscray Library and car park site located on Paisley Street, Footscray, it will also be a vibrant centralised activation space for the Footscray CBD that will stimulate and drive economic, employment and business activation well into the future.
The impact of a vibrant arts and creative economy is wide ranging. Aside from its intrinsic value in promoting a creative, reflective and adaptive community, the arts also promote physical and mental wellbeing, stimulate economic growth, and foster creative and clever ways to design, enhance and build a better city.
The social benefits of cultural institutions have been widely explored. Investing in art and culture is also investing in:
- Community identity
- Developing a sense of place
- Liveability and attractiveness
- Diverse lifestyle and more cultural engagement opportunities
- Fostering community spirit.
Creative West is an ambitious project which will only be able to proceed with funding support.
State Government is being asked to commit $3 million dollars, to be matched by Council, to support delivery of a detailed business case and feasibility study, including schematic designs.
To find out more about the project contact Council by phoning 9688 0200 or send an email to email@example.com