Regina, Sask. – Regina’s Globe Theatre – Saskatchewan’s largest performing arts organization and the regional theatre for Regina – will be getting a major makeover.
Officials announced funding to refurbish the designated heritage building to address water infiltration, replace and fire-proof structural columns in the basement, repair and repoint masonry, and upgrade the mechanical and electrical systems.
“It’s really a centerpiece of downtown, just in terms of physical presence,” Regina mayor Michael Fougere said. “It brings a sense of place to the downtown core as well as being a cultural touchstone.”
“There are a series of pillars that need to be removed in order for the theatre to expand, and the challenge is to remove those pillars and in effect introduce a whole new building on the inside through renovation,” he added.
“It’s for the indigenous community and students who want to get involved in theatre, as well as for putting on world class theatre productions,” Fougere said.
In addition to acting as a cultural hub, Fougere noted the theatre is the original site of Regina’s city hall and “is an excellent example of a heritage building.”
The province stated that once completed, the work will make the building safer and more energy efficient and allow the theatre to offer performances in a larger, more modern theatre-in-the-round.
The funding will be shared between Ottawa, the province, the city and the theatre.
The Government of Canada is contributing $10,831,697 to the project through the Community, Culture and Recreation Stream of the Investing in Canada Plan. Saskatchewan will contribute $9,025,512, and Regina will provide $6,600,000. The Globe Theatre will cover the remaining project costs and related expenses. The total estimated project cost is $28.9 million.
“Beyond the difficulty of getting the attention of all three levels of government, which we got through, there’s also private money coming through which is somewhat unique in an infrastructure investment,” Fougere said.
The mayor added construction will begin next year and will last two to three years with the theatre operating out of a temporary location in the meantime.
“Globe Theatre has continued to entertain, educate and engage the people of Saskatchewan in the art of professional theatre for over 50 years,” Jaime Boldt, executive director, Globe Theatre said in a media release. “We are incredibly grateful to the Government of Canada, the Province of Saskatchewan, the City of Regina and our lead donors for their investment in our theatre. The refurbishment of the historic Prince Edward Building will contribute to the revitalization of Regina’s downtown, create a sustainable financial future for Globe Theatre and enable us to meet the needs of our patrons, artists, students, employees, other arts organizations and the wider community for years to come.”
With additional reporting from Russell Hixson