The Corporation of Delta has received $75,000 from the province to help outfit Delta Museum’s new home.
The money was provided through the government’s B.C./Canada 150 program and administered by the BC Museums Association with support from Heritage BC.
The Delta Museum is currently closed while it moves from its previous location in Ladner’s historic municipal hall to its new home at 4450 Clarence Taylor Cres., alongside the Delta Archives. It is set to open in early 2018.
“We have the base building right now and we haven’t started to fit it out, so you [can] kind of imagine this building like an empty tenant space,” said Ken Kuntz, director of parks, recreation and culture. ““This is a great opportunity. We have essentially a blank canvas to create a new way of telling our history and our story of Delta.”
Last month, Delta hosted a pair of open houses to get public input into how the new museum should be set up. As a result, Kuntz said, the new facility will be a versatile, interactive space for storytelling.
“It will have some of the collection on display. We’ll put other parts of the collection into our recreation centres and into outreach into the community. The space itself...will have the ability to be configured and display information and tell stories in a variety of different ways, including through technology and screens and learning pods and those kinds of things. So we’re at the very early stages of that.”
Along with the change in location and design comes a change in name.
“We’re reframing the name a little bit. Right now we’re calling it a cultural services centre. It’s a cultural service and a history-telling centre. It’s kind of one and the same,” Kuntz said.
“Part of the goal here is to tell the story of Delta from so many different perspectives. It might be [from] the fishermen in one two-week period, and a month later we might be telling it from an artist’s point of view, or an industry point of view, or all kinds of different perspectives. So that’s the goal here, to create a very flexible museum or cultural services centre that can tell the story of Delta from a whole bunch of different ways and means.”
Kuntz said there’s money in the current budget to complete work on the architectural components of the new facility, and the $75,000 grant will go towards “outfitting the building with the kind of apparatus that will be necessary for that storytelling space.”
He said staff is working to determine the scope the of the various elements, including displays cases, projections, sounds and learning stations, then cost those things out and design them.
“They’re going to be more than $75,000-worth,” he said. “But to outfit it properly, well, this will be part of the consideration for the upcoming budget year, and council will want to have some definition around that. That’s what we’re working on right now.”