A new culture hub in Halifax will strengthen small business development, drive economic growth in the culture sector and be a place for artists to gather and perform. Today, Dec. 10, the Government of Nova Scotia, Invest Nova Scotia, the Government of Canada and other partners announced funding to establish the Link Arts Centre in the former World Trade and Convention Centre. The Link Performing Arts Society will redevelop the former convention centre into a state-of-the-art performing arts hub for theatre, dance, film, television and music with additional space and programming for cultural entrepreneurs. “Thanks to some great collaborative partnerships, this exciting new project will bring an unprecedented number of creative sector entrepreneurs under a single roof in the heart of Halifax’s downtown core,” said Leo Glavine, Minister of Communities, Culture and Heritage. “The Link Arts Centre will be transformative for the arts and cultural industries in Nova Scotia and an economic driver for both Halifax and the province.” The province is investing $2.79 million in the project. The Government of Canada is contributing $4.5 million. Armco Capital is also a contributor and is providing more than $2 million. “Cultural spaces like the future Link Arts Centre are outstanding gathering places that allow people from different backgrounds to come together,” said Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism. “Our government is proud to help make the Link Arts Centre a reality, which will make arts and culture accessible to all members of the community.” The Invest Nova Scotia Fund, a provincial fund with an independent board of directors, is also contributing $2.9 million to help establish the new centre and support business incubation for cultural entrepreneurs, including ten new office spaces, hot desks, workshops and business advisory services. “This is exactly the kind of project Invest Nova Scotia was designed to support,” said Colette O’Hara, vice-chair of Invest Nova Scotia. “The Link Arts Centre will grow our cultural sector and help cultural entrepreneurs build strong businesses.” “We wanted this landmark property to remain a destination for the people of Halifax and that would also leave a legacy to the city,” said Sam Armoyan of Armco Capital Inc. “Culture Link’s combination of performance, production and studio space is a great use of the former convention space. With major funding arrangements in place, we’re excited to keep working on design and construction of this unique and important venue for Halifax’s cultural and arts communities”. “The Link Arts Centre will be a multi-disciplinary centre of creativity that will inspire artists and audiences alike. It will cement Halifax as the cultural capital of Atlantic Canada and help nurture the next generation of creative entrepreneurs in our region,” said Rob Power and Marc Almon, founders of Culture Link. “We are excited to get started on final designs and construction of the Link, which will supercharge the downtown entertainment scene and enrich the cultural sector of Nova Scotia.” In 2016, Nova Scotia’s culture sector was valued at $874 million and supported almost 14,000 jobs. The establishment of the Link Arts Centre aligns with Nova Scotia’s Culture Action Plan: Creativity and Community themes. More information is available at novascotia.ca/culture.