Going Fast – Facilities Workshops, Loans and Grants

 

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Some of us are writing grants, some of us are receiving them, some of us are looking at new strategies for managing the same old budget, something stable but not keeping up with inflation and rising energy costs. Well, we have resources for you!

Below-Market Rent Opportunities in Toronto

Yes, below-market rental spaces are available for arts organizations! On Tuesday March 18th, learn how to find more affordable spaces through BMR offerings from City of Toronto. This info session includes a tour of an available space in Toronto Public Health. Full details – [LINK]

Low Interest Loans for Greening

Many energy retrofits and renewable energy projects are eligible for low-interest loans through. And the best part is, the process is straightforward. Before doing any major paperwork, complete a short and sweet “Intent to Apply” PDF to see if your project is eligible. This step saves you time in your funding search! Details here – [LINK]

Culture Build Investment Program – Deadline April 14

The Culture Build Investment Program provides matching funds to assist the City’s not-for-profit cultural sector with financing for state of good repair capital projects. The program also provides funding for feasibility studies for projects that meet the criteria. In 2014, Toronto City Council has earmarked $330,000 for the program. To date, the Culture Build Investment Program has helped bring 71 cultural facilities closer to a state of good repair. Your organization could be next! Applicatoin details – [LINK]

image by FutUndBeidl, CC by 2.0


Does this sound familiar?

“Problems multiply when short-term solutions are applied to facilities problems. The problems persist and more often get worse.”

“We need evaluations to observe and tell us what a building might need in the future, operationally, including the amount of money needed to maintain it, as well as other project costs.”

Sound familiar? These were just two conversations from our community engagement sessions that addressed the need for lifecycle and maintenance planning for facilities across the province (these examples came from Thunder Bay and Kitchener-Waterloo).

managing_rev1-page-0These are also exactly the questions and concerns that Asset Planner for the Arts is here to answer. With a personalized onboarding process that loads your information directly into the software, asset forecasting for the next 30 years (with a focus on the next five years) and a site visit from a qualified building assessor, setting a facilities management plan in motion has never been easier – or more accessible.

Here’s why The Robert McLaughlin Gallery is participating in Asset Planner for the Arts:

“The Asset Planner for the Arts will improve our current system of inventorying equipment and improve scheduled maintenance cycles. In addition, Asset Planner is able to assist with developing short term and long term financial goals both expenses and savings for the Gallery. We are interested in preventative maintenance opportunities to maximize the longevity of the equipment and the Asset Planner is a tool that will assist us in achieving that success. By joining this program we are receiving continual technical support for the Asset Planner while maximizing its ability to work favourably for the Gallery.”

ArtsBuild’s subsidy for Asset Planner for the Arts saves you 50% off this two-year program. You can’t afford not to learn more. Contact Lindsay to book your free Asset Planner demo.


The Path to Sustainability

conferencelogoOver the next month, as a part of our countdown to Staging Sustainability, we will be profiling speakers, previewing performances and presenting articles on culture and sustainability that will jump-start the sustainability conversation leading up to February’s conference.

It only seems fitting that the first article is titled “Path to Sustainability”. Written by Tanja Beer, Julie’s Bicycle’s first Activist in Residence and a Staging Sustainability speaker, this article talks about how Tanja took her passion for sustainable living at home to her work life as a set designer. Recognizing she was abandoning her sustainable practices while designing sets, she comments on the state of theatre from an environmental perspective: “We were trained with the end result in mind. How we got to opening night or what happened to our sets and costumes after the production ended was simply not a priority.”

Read on to learn the tipping point in Tanja’s set designing and how she is now able to be a global citizen at home and on stage. [ LINK ]

Julie’s Bicycle is ‘a not for profit organization making sustainability intrinsic to the business, art and ethics of the creative industries’ and is truly an innovator for sustainability and the arts in the UK. Their work is used around the world as a leading example of how arts organizations can measure, manage and reduce their environmental impacts.

Tanja joins Staging Sustainability as a member of a panel speaking to sustainability and technical production, answering the question: What part do designers play in bringing sustainable practice into performance?

As you plan for a prosperous new year for your organizations, see Tanja and many other international sustainability thought leaders at Staging Sustainability 2014, a must-attend conference for all interested in the sustainability of the performing arts – with three downtown Toronto locations, February 3 – 4, 2014, with pre- and post-conference activities on February 2 and 5. Special Bursaries available for artists and small art organizations. Register at www.stagingsustainability.ca


Where do you fit in?

After almost two months since introducing the ArtsBuild Facilities Census to arts organizations across the province, we’ve begun to make some progress in achieving our Census goal. To remind you, that’s collecting information about all arts facilities in Ontario – yes, all of them. From Kenora to North Bay to Leamington to Stratford to Perth to literally everywhere in between! Why are we doing this? Because this information matters!

ArtsBuild Ontario exists to advocate for arts facilities – the bricks and mortar that gives your organization a home. But in order to do this effectively, we need to learn more about what makes your facilities what they are and what they can be.

population-mdAre you a small gallery looking to breakout into your own space? We want to know more.

Are you a theatre group ready to lease permanent rehearsal space? We want to hear about it.

Are you a museum that needs to make room for more staff?   We want to learn about your plans.

And the Facilities Census is just the beginning; after all, this information has to live somewhere.

 

That’s where Bricks&Mortar comes in, aptly named for the database storing the information collected in the Census. No two organizations are the same and the buildings they’re housed in are no different. There is no one solution for facilities’ needs and no ‘one-size-fits-all’ plan to meet those needs. This is why it’s important all arts facilities are counted in our Census.

… And that’s why your participation is so critical in the Census. We encourage you to reach out to the ArtsBuild team with your questions about how your organization can get involved. Visit www.artsbuildontario.ca/bricksandmortar to BE COUNTED!


Facilities management made easy!

As ArtsBuild has traveled to different parts of the province and has been engaged in more and more conversations about arts facilities and your needs, we have really begun to recognize how much support is needed to help our organizations manage their facilities.

We have been trying to understand who is responsible for maintaining arts facilities, who is responsible for capital improvements and who pays the bills! In most cases the answer isn’t cut and dry. There is more than one player and at the end of the day it is the organization that needs their facility alive and well for the art.

Most municipalities have a system that monitors the life of their infrastructure and if the municipality owns and takes care of your building then the life of your building is tracked through this type of system.

But what happens if you are responsible for your facility? How do you afford such a system and how do you begin to find one? And, is this the right tool for you? We took these questions and began talking to those in the field of Asset Management to find a system that:

1. Would be affordable to arts organizations and

2. Would provide organizations with training and expertise.

Ameresco, an environmental sustainability company, introduced us to their system and we knew immediately that this could be the solution for our sector. This program provides arts organizations with an affordable solution, that tracks all the components of your arts facility (yes – this includes your lighting grids and temperature control systems and other such unique components).

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This asset management program will help you prioritize what needs to be done to your building, when and for how much. It will give you charts, reports and data without you having to click through numerous excel sheets (and it will house all those facility documents you have lying around too).

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With support from other arts service organizations Toronto Alliance for the Performing Arts, Ontario Association of Art Galleries and Ontario Museums Association, we are hosting two demonstrations of this system that we believe will take some of the burden off of our arts facilities managers (whether they be Executive Directors, Artistic Managers or Curators) and help with keeping our arts facilities in good repair. We have invited Ameresco’s VP of Asset Sustainability, to answer all of your questions and give you a walk-through of how you can use this system. These sessions are free and important for anyone that operates an arts facility. Graciously hosted by OMA, OAAG and TAPA – please let Lindsay MacDonald lindsay@artsbuildontario.ca know if you would like to attend.

OMA and OAAG TAPA
10:30-12:30pm
50 Baldwin ST – George Brown House
3:00-5:00
Suite 350 – 401 Richmond – TAPA Boardroom