Vernon voters approve $25M cultural facility in referendum | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Vernon voters approve $25M cultural facility in referendum

FILE PHOTO: Vernon Public Art Gallery executive director Dauna Kennedy Grant.
October 20, 2018 - 11:18 PM

VERNON - Voters have approved the cultural centre in a referendum.

The North Okanagan Regional District said late tonight voters approved borrowing $25 million over 20 years for a new cultural centre, which involves creating a new space for the Vernon Public Art Gallery and Greater Vernon Museum and Archives.

The results were 7,850 in favour and 5,357 against.

People who live in the City of Vernon, District of Coldstream and Areas B and C were eligible to vote.

The plan to build a cultural centre in one form or another dates back over a decade or more.

In the lead up to the referendum, voters were told the cultural centre would cost $48 per year for the average household based on the assessed property value of $430,000.

While the referendum asked for $25 million, the full price tag of the project is $40 million, with grants, fundraising and partnerships proposed to make up the difference.

According to the North Okanagan Regional District, the three-storey 39,000 square foot building would be built at 30 Street and 34 Avenue and have a 150- to 200-seat performance space, room for travelling exhibits at the museum and art gallery, and classroom and workshop spaces along with a gift shop.

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