Artscape Launches New Online Do-It-Yourself Resource for Creative Placemaking and City-Building Through The Arts

Looking to develop sustainable, affordable space for culture and creativity that contributes to the transformation and revitalization of your community? Visit Artscape DIY, the go-to source for all the tools and resources and inspiration you’ll need to get started on your own cultural facility development. Explore the practice of creative placemaking and get inspired!

Artscape DIY

At Artscape, creative placemaking is at the heart of what we do. Creative placemaking is an evolving field of practice that intentionally leverages the power of the arts, culture and creativity to serve a community’s interest while driving a broader agenda for change, growth and transformation in a way that also builds character and quality of place. Over 25 years, we’ve learned that creative placemaking can be an ambitious process that requires out-of-the-box thinking, unique partnerships and a collaborative approach to development.

Designed to empower and guaranteed to inspire, Artscape DIY is a FREE online resource featuring extensive case studies, tools and resources, including easy-to-use downloadable templates and examples, informational videos, guides and articles designed to help users through the business of developing sustainable, affordable space for culture and creativity.

Key Features of Artscape DIY:

  • In-depth insight into the Practice and Theories of Creative Placemaking, including: Approaches to Creative Placemaking, Cultural Districts, Creative and Cultural Industry Clustering, Mixed-Use Development, Artist Relation Projects,  Community Arts, Defining the Creative and Cultural Sector, Why Place Matters, and the Importance of Collaboration and Partnerships
  • Detailed Case Studies of Artscape Projects: telling the story from inception to current operations, including project materials such as feasibility studies, project plans and calls for proposals; informational videos with key stakeholders; and archival reference materials for: Artscape Wychwood Barns, Artscape Distillery Studios, Artscape Gibraltar Point, Artscape Triangle Lofts and the Parkdale Arts & Cultural Centre
  • Creative Placemaking Toolbox: comprehensive and searchable by topic; all the essential tools and resources you’ll need to get started on your own cultural facility development, including: The Most Important Factors in a Successful Project, How to Assess the Feasibility of a Project, How to Select and Contract Specialists and Services, How to Identify and Engage Stakeholders, How to Determine a Capital Budget, How to Select Tenants...and more
  • Easy-to-use Downloadable Templates, Guides, Tip Sheets and Examples, including: Tenant Charter, Request for Expressions of Interest and Commercial Sublease examples; guides to Engaging the Community in Your Project, Managing the Development Process, Approaches to Creative Placemaking, and Canadian Capital Funding Sources; templates for New Project Assessment Matrix and Operating Budgets
  • Video Interviews: firsthand perspectives from Artscape staff, project partners and community stakeholders on Community Partnerships, Building a Project Team, How Can a City Help, Environmental Aspects, Using Planning Tools and Incentives, and The Most Important Factors in a Successful Projects
  • Extensive listing of External Resources, including: Government planning tools, incentives and programs; Reports, information and resources relevant to creative placemaking, cultural policy, social innovation, collaboration, entrepreneurship, public space, artist live/work space and affordable housing; and Municipal, provincial and Canada-wide grants as well as funding resources available from private organizations and foundations
  • Artscape Archives: a collection of materials documenting Artscape’s evolving practice, including: News Articles, Archival Newsletters, Materials that provide a glimpse into the story of many of Artscape's properties, and a collection of Original Publications documenting some of the organization's most prominent contributions to creative placemaking policy and research
  • Plus the newly updated popular manual Square Feet: The Artist’s Guide to Renting and Buying Creative Space, the indispensible how-to resource for artists and small arts organizations that answers the questions Artscape hears most: How do I go about finding space? Gross lease, net lease, net-net lease, what’s the difference? Should I consider buying? What are my rights as a tenant? This manual answers these questions and many, many more.

Artscape DIY is the latest component of Artscape’s Knowledge Exchange Program; a continuing suite of programs that marries Artscape’s street level awareness with groundbreaking research and international connections, including: a Mentorship and Coaching Program, Research and Development, and Spacemaking and Placemaking Workshops.

Artscape gratefully acknowledges the support of the Ontario Trillium Foundation Province-Wide Fund, as well as the contributions of Ecentricarts Inc. in the creation of Artscape DIY.  The development of the website was guided by an advisory committee consisting of representatives from the City of Toronto Cultural Affairs Office, ArtsBuild Ontario, the City of St. Catharines, Toronto Community Foundation, Toronto Arts Council, Martin Prosperity Institute, NarrativeNow and Interactive Ontario. The newly revised edition of Square Feet: The Artist’s Guide To Renting and Buying Creative Space was made possible by the generous assistance of the Ontario Arts Council and the Ontario Trillium Foundation.

Over the last 25 years, Artscape has developed a reputation as Canada’s leading practitioner in multi-tenant space development for the arts, cultural and creative sector, successfully transforming a portfolio of underutilized buildings across Toronto into dynamic community assets. Artscape envisions, designs, develops, operates and increasingly programs our facilities as platforms for collaboration supporting cross-disciplinary and cross-sector innovation. The diverse partners we work with and the diversity of partnerships we build play a critical role in the realization of our developments. To make our developments happen we bring partners, investors and other stakeholders together in collaboration with the creative community, and while our projects are rooted in arts and culture they are equally about growing local economies, enriching the social fabric and promoting cleaner, greener approaches. It is not by accident that our projects are in the centre of some of Toronto’s most dynamic and creative neighbourhoods, because we have helped to grow them. Artscape’s work is supported by the Artscape Foundation, a registered charity.