AMS Planning & Research (AMS) was hired in May 2012 to prepare the Business Case for the Edmonton Performing Arts Center (EPAC), which is one of three components in the proposed Edmonton – Downtown Academic and Cultural Campus (E-DACC). E-DACC will also include facilities for the University of Alberta Department of Music and the Department of Art and Design, as well as commercial office and retail space.
The business case for EPAC is based on six areas of benefit to the community: filling a gap in the venue inventory, program expansion, ”place-making”, market-making, collaboration, and realistic operating economics. Along with existing venues in the cultural corridor, the development has the opportunity to be a catalyst for transforming the downtown Arts District into a vibrant cultural destination.
AMS’s scope of work included preparation of a detailed organizational and financial operating plan to maximize operating success for the EPAC, including an assessment of venues and seating capacity. AMS provided objective, practical insights and recommendations to enhance the positive impact the proposed facility can have on community vitality, arts and entertainment offerings, and economic development priorities through the introduction of a ”cultural core” concept.
At the conclusion of the initial study, AMS was retained to provide additional and ongoing project support to the development, including further financial operating plan analysis, a local venue impact analysis, and research into cultural districts and cultural trust models in the United States and Canada.