9

Action 9: Cultural Strategies and Revitalization

Why are cultural strategies and revitalization important?

  • Cultural strategies and revitalization have the ability to contribute to improvements to the social fabric of communities and human health and well-being as well as the sustainability of a space.

  • They can build and maintain public places that foster community and social development.

  • The recognition of history and importance of place can be tied into historic preservation initiatives. 

 

Bruce County: Case Study

  • The County of Bruce has established ‘Spruce the Bruce’, which is a downtown improvement program. The program focuses on revitalizing and redefining the identity of individual downtown centres; it also provides organizational support and grants. Spruce the Bruce helps to enhance the built form of communities through restoration and design and also helps individual towns by developing a new community vision. 

Recommendations for rural municipalities

  • Recognize the important of built heritage resources such as downtowns and villages. Many municipalities have been successful with this through community improvement plans, business important associations and local fundraising. This gives rural downtown the opportunity to become a vibrant and healthy economic development areas.

  • Promote local events and festivals. The arts contribute to community well-being, volunteering and economic opportunities and have shown to improve the health of residents. This could include promoting local theatre, local arts and craft festivals and downtown activities such as outdoor markets.

  • Tips from practitioners:

    • Identify what makes your community unique and build on this.

    • Discover initiatives that citizens will get excited about and support.

    • Downtowns and cultural events have a connection to community economic development, tourism, employment and services.