Page 4003 - Week 13 - Wednesday, 30 October 2013

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The Chief Minister’s export awards, which are part of a national program to recognise excellence in export performance across a number of different categories, is supported. The Centre for Exporting Government Solutions provides resources and expert mentoring to small and medium size enterprises with a demonstrated capability of delivering innovative solutions to the Australian public sector to access international markets. The ACT international student ambassador program is a niche initiative that aims to leverage the international student experience in Canberra, both as an international education marketing tool and as a skills network that can link to the ACT economy.

Arts—Ainslie and Gorman House arts centres

MR GENTLEMAN: My question is to the Minister for Arts. Minister, can you update the Assembly on the progress of the government’s 2013-14 budget commitments to invest $1.5 million and $1 million in capital upgrades to the Ainslie and Gorman House arts centres respectively?

MS BURCH: I thank Mr Gentleman for his interest in the arts. Yes, the ACT government is committed to developing arts hubs that will add vibrancy and profile to the local arts sector. The development and enhancement of arts hubs is a significant step in achieving the goals set out in the ACT arts policy framework.

Arts hubs will be achieved by promoting the development of a critical mass of activity and encouraging the cooperation and resource sharing amongst arts organisations. More than that, arts hubs will encourage creative dialogue, promoting collaboration between artists and organisation, and support innovation in the arts.

To fulfil this vision, the ACT government is currently engaged in the design process for a capital works upgrade program for the Ainslie Arts Centre and has commissioned a schematic design from Philip Leeson Architects and cultural planner, Geoff Ashley, which outlines potential capital upgrades to enhance the function of the centre based on present and future use.

The $1.5 million commitment will contribute to major modifications of the Ainslie Arts Centre and enhance the function of the heritage facility for specific use as a music hub. The capital works upgrade will create a greater diversity of opportunities for the local community by providing accessible and innovative education and performance opportunities for children, young people and adults of Canberra and surrounds. By including spaces for collaboration, gathering, education and performance, the Ainslie Arts Centre will become a destination for music in the ACT.

For Gorman House Arts Centre, following the allocation of $1 million in capital funding, artsACT again engaged Philip Leeson Architects and Susan Conroy Cultural Planner to undertake a scoping study and design for the centre. The scoping study explored options for how the physical framework of Gorman House may be modified to best meet the needs of the tenants and the wider community, promoting and facilitating optimal use of the centre. The report provides a long-term strategy identifying capital works rectification and upgrades to support a coherent and overarching vision for the centre.

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