French arts facility steaming ahead in 2017: Place des Arts plans to house existing businesses currently operating separately, create new spaces and opportunities.

Author:Myers, Ella

Another one of Sudbury's large projects is closer to their goal thanks to two major announcements in December.

Place des Arts received a commitment of $5 million towards the project from the Greater Sudbury city council, and $150,700 from FedNor to support their development.

The shared arts facility would house seven different francophone businesses, and they estimate it would draw 50,000 people downtown each year, and house 60 regular staff.

The total budget for the project is $30 million. The Place des Arts board is hoping the $5 million from the city will help leverage funding from other sources, including major donors, from whom they hope to raise $2.6 million by April 2018. "We already started this fall, but since we didn't have the approval it was kind of awkward to submit to major donor proposals," said director of development Paulette Gagnon. "Now we can go full steam ahead with the major donor campaign."

Alongside their funding proposals, Place des Arts had a promising member campaign. In November, they targeted the seven member organizations with a goal of raising $325,000, around 10 per cent of their total budget. When they tallied up their results before city council's decision on Dec. 16, they had raised $339,000. They will continue the campaign into the new year, with a new goal of $400,000.

The proposed 60,000-squarefoot building would have a bar and restaurant with a capacity of 100, a small 150-seat theatre, and a larger 300-seat theatre. It will have administrative spaces, studios, a boutique, and even a francophone daycare.

They already have a recent commerce graduate from Laurentian...

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