The JCP has continued to lay the groundwork for the next phase of the work to be done which is the feasibility study. In June, members of the Task Force met with Build Toronto to discuss the status of the building. Build Toronto doesn’t have any pressing or detailed plans for the site at this time and the Junction Commons Project will likely have enough time to complete our feasibility study. This is great news for us! Meanwhile, we await official news from Trillium; there should be an announcement any day now.
Members of the JCP have also been visiting other city community sites. Scarborough Arts (who are looking for a new space) held a public consultation in which JCP members were participants. This gave them experience with some public consultation techniques. At the meeting with the Riverdale Community Hub director, we learned how important it is to work hard to access ‘disenfranchised’ parts of the community in the feasibility study process. At the Lucy McCormick School meeting we learned that there would be both limitations to as well as the possibility of great exchanges between the students and teachers there and the surrounding community through the JCP. Lucy McCormick has a great gardening program which we thought had potential to extend into exchange relations with the community. We also had members in attendance at a recent city organized meeting called Making Space for Culture to discuss art resources available in Ward 13 as well as needs that might exist. There was much time spent listing cafes that show art as well as other for rent spaces available such as Swansea Town Hall and the many churches that are eager to expand their cultural role. JCP members present spoke about the need for community space that had a further reaching cultural mandate than rental space for display and performance, but that supported a multi-scale arts engagement such as affordable studio space, possible artist residencies, open studio workshops for community based arts practices as well as exhibition space… Also, engaging experimental and multi-media arts projects such as garden or food art!
Once we hear about the Trillium grant we will (presuming a positive outcome) be moving forward with the feasibility study, so make sure to sign up to this blog for further details on getting your perspectives heard and included in the Junction Commons Project.