Summerland council receives cultural plan

The report from Summerland’s Cultural Plan Task Force has been received by municipal council.

The report from Summerland’s Cultural Plan Task Force has been received by municipal council, almost a year and a half after the committee was formed.

The task force members were appointed on April 13, 2015 and in the months following, they held numerous public input meetings and received more than 2,300 comments from the community.

“They undertook a huge amount of public process,” said Ian McIntosh, director of development services for the community.

The 33-page report is the first cultural plan for the community.

It includes five strategic directions for the community.

o Reflect Summerland’s cultural values in municipal decisions and projects.

o Establish an administrative framework to support the arts, heritage and culture.

o Enhance public spaces and cultural places.

o Build on community strengths and assets.

o Connect the community.

“This particular plan is reasonable and doable,” said Linda Tynan, chief administrative officer for the community.

Coun. Doug Holmes said the plan is important because it recognizes the importance of culture in a community.

“The emphasis today is on quality of place,” he said.

Mayor Peter Waterman said it is important for the community to recognize the importance of arts and culture. “The arts community and the artists themselves are major economic drivers in any community,” he said. “Summerland has always been a haven for arts and culture.”

He added that the emphasis on arts and culture has been a priority for the present council.

“This council definitely understands and appreciates the arts world,” he said.