Entitled Imagine Port Coquitlam, the City of Port Coquitlam’s Cultural Plan was received by Council on June 27, 2016 and will guide the city’s arts, culture and heritage events, programs, services and facility operations for the next decade.
The plan was developed following a year-long community engagement process and replaces the 2001 Cultural Policy and Plan.
Port Coquitlam’s unique cultural identity underlies the direction of the plan and its vision: “Port Coquitlam’s vibrant culture celebrates our unique small town charm and weaves creativity into our active, outdoor lifestyles.”
- Provides information to help the City plan for future arts and cultural services and facilities.
- Identified what’s important to residents in terms of arts and culture.
- Assessed the current state of arts and culture in the community, including usership, role, leadership, facilities and resources – what works and what doesn’t.
- Identified barriers and opportunities related to arts and culture in the community.
- Defined Port Coquitlam’s culture – what is important to our community.
Based on public consultation, important cultural touchstones for the community were:
- Active, outdoor lifestyles
- Enjoyment of local trails, parks and rivers
- Being the hometown of national hero Terry Fox
- Small-town feel and community spirit
The public identified its top arts, culture and heritage interests as:
- Festivals and events
- Stage plays
- Family and children’s programs
- Musical theatre
- Walking tours
- Arts in public spaces
- Jazz and blues music
- Visual arts and fine craft fairs
- Culinary arts
- Arts and craft classes
Areas of improvement identified during the public consultation included the need for:
- More collaboration among arts and culture groups,
- Enhanced marketing and promotion of cultural services, events, facilities and programs,
- Local talent opportunities and recognition, and
- Active leadership and optimized use of existing facilities.
Implementation of the plan will be managed by the City’s new Manager of Cultural Development and Community Services. This position will be in place by the end of summer 2016.
First-year outcomes from the plan will include:
- A new festivals committee – an external body that will identify opportunities to enhance existing festivals and events, and initiate and attract new events. The scope and makeup will be determined by the Health Communities Committee starting in fall 2016.
- A new cultural roundtable – a network of Port Coquitlam arts, cultural and heritage groups that will come together to share resources and seek opportunities to collaborate and grow, with support from the city. Development of the roundtable will begin in fall 2016.
- A new Manager of Cultural Development and Community Services – created by restructuring staff and topping up an existing position to attract someone with expertise in cultural planning, managing facilities, facilitating committees and community engagement. This manager is to be in place by the end of summer 2016.