Made official this morning, The Art Gallery of Windsor and the Windsor Public Library will be joining forces helping create a new Culture and Recreation Hub in Downtown Windsor, with the Art Gallery becoming the new home of the Windsor Public Library’s Central Branch.
“This is just the beginning of a transformation happening in this section of the city”, said Windsor Mayor Eddie Francis. “It will open the Art Gallery to a wider audience, provide a state of the art home for the Library and be the perfect neighbour to the new Aquatic Complex”.
Officials said that details on the timing of the co-location will be worked out in the coming weeks and months but Councillor Al Maghnieh, who also Chair’s the Library Board, says the spring of 2012 is the target date. “We will be on the leading edge of providing services in the 21st century thanks to this plan”.
Art Gallery Director Catharine Mastin says “the opportunity to strengthen and further develop diverse audiences will be more available thanks to this shared community space. It will invite collaborative programming along with expanded educational opportunities providing an enhanced visitor experience”.
The city will purchase the Art Gallery then lease the space back to both the Gallery and the Library. The city says that the purchase should be completed early in 2012.
Directly behind the Art Gallery on land bounded by Pitt Street, Bruce Avenue and Church Street is the new location for the family aquatic complex that is scheduled to be open in the summer of 2013.
With the new Library and Art Gallery Partnership and the new aquatic complex, the area is set to become a culture and recreation hub in Downtown Windsor.