Creative Kāpiti Project:

Creative Kāpiti Hub

Project Lead: Creative Kapiti Hub
Project contact: jenna@creativekapiti.nz
Project Status: Scoping
Start Date: October, 2020

New, additional infrastructure is required to continue to grow the Kāpiti creative industries and support the development of creative skills. With a growing creative workforce and the majority of creative practitioners operating creative businesses from home based studios, bedrooms, and garages, new infrastructure would also support potential buyers, collectors, clients and the public to more readily connect with the highly skilled Kāpiti creative sector throughout the year.

The lack of old buildings, warehouses and more affordable space to rent is having a significant impact on our creative workforce. Creative Kāpiti regularly fields enquiries for affordable access to space and has an action in the Kāpiti Economic Development Strategy 2020 – 2023 to explore the feasibility of establishing a Creative Hub. In other parts of New Zealand and overseas, creative hubs are all weather, all season, creative visitor attractions encompassing boutique shopping, creative workshops, and social spaces where people connect, discover and return.

Our consultation with creatives in the past two years has identified the need for a multi-purpose creative hub based in the largest town, Paraparaumu, that can cater for a range of creative activities across different disciplines, including night time activities. There are creative businesses currently willing to pay commercial rates as well as emerging creatives wanting to grow their business in a creative incubator start-up. Housing affordability is having a significant impact with creatives not in home ownership at particular risk of losing their creative space and business. It is also resulting in increased interest from Wellington city creatives to move up to the coast, where comparatively, the cost of living is more affordable here than the city.

What do we mean by Creative Hub? Essentially, a ‘hub’ to bring creatives together to foster greater connection and collaboration (similar to a business co-working space but with a creative focus), where services can be shared and equipment hired by both creatives and the public, and where residents and visitors can spend time.

Specifically:

  • artist studios (individual and group)
  • workshop space for teaching (large with wet and dry areas)
  • a contemporary community gallery with 2-3 dedicated spaces for large and small works that artists can hire
  • equipment hire (e.g. 3D printing, C & C router, and other equipment that can be booked)
  • dedicated creative digital technology space
  • permanent stage for band rehearsal and performance with a bar (a percentage of the bar take to go back into supporting creative projects)
  • music teaching studios
  • a materials storage area for upcycling
  • an on site cafe (to attract the public and if possible, a percentage of profit redirected to funding creative projects)
  • meeting rooms (can be hired by the public as well as artists)
  • office space including hot desks
  • adjacent outdoor space for sculpture creation, for outdoor performances, for creating outdoors
  • accommodation to enable artist-in-residency opportunities.

Creative Kāpiti has researched various types of creative hubs nationally and internationally. An artist-led space with an income generation model is a more sustainable model. We are actively pursuing how to make this happen and would see this hub connecting with other developments such as Whalesong.