Fredericton Arts & Learning, Inc is a nonprofit organization that owns and operates the Charlotte Street Arts Centre, facilitates a variety of arts presentations, organizes yearly free arts-based educational outreach programming (ArtReach) and funds the annual Charlotte Glencross Scholarship for Professional Development in the Arts.
Fredericton Arts & Learning is run by a volunteer Board of Directors, which includes a fair representation of individuals from varying business, arts and multicultural communities. The board also has representation from the municipal and provincial levels.
Fredericton Arts & Learning, Inc was founded and incorporated in 2001 and became a registered charity in 2002. The purpose for the establishment of the organization was to work to meet the community’s need for an arts centre and for more arts programming. FAL officially took ownership of the Charlotte Street School in 2004, renaming it the Charlotte Street Arts Centre, after 2-3 years of planning and fundraising.
As an arts organization situated in the Capital Region, Fredericton Arts & Learning, Inc (FAL) facilitates the development of arts and culture locally, provincially, nationally and internationally through our fundamental services and presentation programs:
- Charlotte Street Arts Centre facility
- ArtReach programming
- Charlotte Glencross Scholarship for Professional Development in the Arts
- Artist-in-Residence program
- Charlotte Glencross Gallery
- Culture Garden
Our Expansion Project
Currently, the Charlotte Street Arts Centre building features one wheelchair ramp at the left side of the building, built by volunteers from Canadian Forces Base Gagetown. This ramp only provides access to one floor of the building, giving no access to the Auditorium, Multipurpose Room, café, or many other rooms in the building.
A single-person lift was installed in 2010, in the front portion of the building, and operates on a universal key system. The lift represents a short-term, partial solution to our accessibility problem – it doesn’t provide access to the back portion of the facility, where the Auditorium, Multipurpose Room, café, and many other offices and studios are located. In short, the main rental areas in the building are still limited in accessibility and rental potential.
Also in 2010, two wheelchair parking spaces were painted and appropriate signage installed next to the outdoor ramp, as another interim gesture. Many of our existing and potential community partners are asking that our facility be fully accessible as soon as possible. As a large facility in a city with a significant and growing demographic of elderly and aging citizens, our need for more accommodating accessibility is very real and pressing. We are committed to seeing these changes through.
When Fredericton Arts & Learning assumed responsibility for the development of the Charlotte Street Arts Centre in January 2005, a long-term plan was developed for necessary building upgrades. The largest and final phase of the long-term development strategy includes providing structures to improve accessibility to the second floor and basement of the (rear) 1917 section of the building, by building an addition and installing a larger elevator to provide complete access to all of the building.
The target areas of THE CHARLOTTE STREET ARTS CENTRE ACCESSIBILITY EXPANSION are the basement, and first and second floors of the 1917 section of the building. The 1917 section currently includes:
- Basement: Milda's Pizza & More café, New Brunswick Filmmakers’ Co-op Resource Rooms, storage for tenants, Haunted House fundraiser high-scare areas
- First floor: New Brunswick Filmmakers’ Co-op offices/ labs/ equipment rooms, Artists Studios
- Second floor: Auditorium, Multipurpose Room
Providing access to these resources and services will greatly enhance what we are able to offer to mobility-challenged individuals and those who support them, the community at large, and what we are able to secure for our organization in terms of revenue income.
This final stage of our development includes building an addition on to the back of what is now the Auditorium stage (1917 section). This addition is designed to include a 15-person freight elevator to allow patrons to access the auditorium stage, the auditorium main floor area, the basement and the Multipurpose Room, and will provide new universal access washrooms at the Auditorium level. The addition will also provide a backstage for proper storage of the new grand piano, and a more appropriate area for theatre and dance participants to wait backstage.
This addition is important because it will offer the only elevator access to the lower level of the building, where the café, additional bathrooms and other studios are located. It will also afford access to additional office spaces to be developed on the upper and lower levels (which will be necessary additional rental incomes to support our expanded operations and maintenance). The expansion/elevator will also be beneficial for delivery of theatre sets, musicians' equipment, and supplies required for receptions. Plans also present appropriate air conditioning in the Auditorium, necessary for both rentals and the proper maintenance of the piano.
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