The City is developing a plan for the adaptive reuse of the “Heritage Theatre Block” in Downtown Brampton. The Heritage Theatre Block (the Block) is a group of four buildings located at 70-82 Main Street north, including the historic Heritage Theatre.
These buildings are owned by the City. The Heritage Theatre itself has been under-used for the past number of years, in anticipation of a longer-term use strategy by the City for the entire block buildings. The Brampton Arts Council (BAC) is a tenant in one of the buildings at present, which houses Beaux Arts Brampton. The Brampton Downtown Development Corporation (BDDC) is also a tenant in one of the buildings.
The project is closely related to the City’s Downtown HACE Creative Economy Plan, (HACE: Heritage, Arts, Culture and Entertainment). One of the goals of this plan is to attract, enhance and retain HACE and Creative Economy industries in Downtown Brampton. The plan includes support for the redevelopment of the Heritage Theatre Block to provide space for arts-related businesses, artist work units or other cultural industries. This project also supports Downtown Revitalization, including the goal that the area will continue to be the“…physical centre of Brampton, location of main civic and cultural facilities, and will preserve and enhance the existing heritage in compatible, pedestrian-scale developments with strong urban character”.
City Council approved a report recommending an adaptive reuse approach for the Heritage Theatre Block. Council subsequently considered a proposed business plan for the adaptive reuse of the Block and directed staff to solicit public and key stakeholder input on the adaptive reuse of the Block. Council further directed staff to report back on the results of the consultation and on the scope and terms of a Request for Expression of Interest (RFEI) or other mechanism designed to attract potential partners in the project from the private, institutional and community-based groups.
To assist with the Heritage Theatre Block project, the City engaged Artscape, a not-for-profit organization and leading Canadian practitioner in multi-tenant space for the creative and cultural sector. Artscape is assisting the City with the development, release and review of the RFEI.
The RFEI envisions the Block as a mixed-use development incorporating a community cultural hub, which may be realized through reuse, infill or redevelopment. The RFEI seeks a broad range of Respondents, whose potential roles may include but would not be limited to: program providers, tenants, facility operators, and development partners.
Throughout Council-directed stakeholder and public consultations on the adaptive reuse of the Heritage Theatre Block, there was strong support for the retention of historic components of the Heritage Theatre and HACE supportive uses in the Block. However, overall feedback included a varied range of interests in the Block possibilities, warranting a broader scope for the RFEI than solely adaptive reuse.
The RFEI will be released for a period of several weeks. During this time, Respondents will be invited to attend non-compulsory information sessions on the Block opportunity. Upon receipt and evaluation of responses staff will report back to Council on the outcomes.