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Creative neighbourhoods and their social and economic benefits

Volume: 9 Issue: 4

Legacy ID (armUID): 
In this issue: Four reports and presentations that examine artistic neighbourhoods, spaces and districts, including the intersection of culture, economy and place.
ARM_vol9_no4.pdf179.11 KB


  • Impacts and Insights from Three Case Studies drawn from Artspace Projects’ Earliest Developments

    This report examines the social, economic and physical impacts of two artists' cooperatives and a centre for visual arts in Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota. The report finds that "these artist spaces have produced clear benefits for in-house arts tenants and the surrounding neighborhood and region". More specifically, the study "found evidence that these artist spaces support, attract, and help retain artist entrepreneurs who enhance the regions' economic competitiveness". Specific economic and social benefits include drawing visitors to the area (who engage in ancillary spending), increasing civic involvement and safety, as well as "providing new spaces open to the public".

  • Mark J. Stern, University of Pennsylvania

    According to this presentation, the cultural sector can be seen as an ecosystem "that is central to the 'architecture of community'", especially four key community dimensions: social capital, public assets, market relations, and the flows of information, capital and people.

  • The report provides an analysis of artists residing in various postal regions – "neighbourhoods" – in Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto, Calgary and Vancouver in 2006. The report provides lists of the ten neighbourhoods with the highest concentration of artists in each city. Nearly 22,000 artists live in the 50 neighbourhoods in the five cities' top ten lists. This represents 41% of the artists in the five cities and 16% of all artists in Canada. Since 41% of all artists in the five cities reside in the most artistic neighbourhoods, the report notes that cultural development in cities is partly an issue of neighbourhood development.

  • Toronto Artscape

    This presentation provides lists of the "base elements of infrastructure" that may enhance creative neighbourhoods. The live/work and creation/production spaces highlighted in the report include artist live-work spaces, artist coops or lodges, artist studios, retail spaces, media or recording studios, soundstages, production workshops and rehearsal spaces.