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Dec. 8, 2019 | Sunday
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RiverBrink explores feasibility of expanding
Debra Antoncic, director and curator of RiverBrink Fine Art Museum says she encourages the community to attend the open house. (Brittany Carter/Niagara Now)

Queenston’s RiverBrink Fine Art Museum is trying to determine whether a future expansion would be viable and it’s laying the groundwork by holding a public open house Nov. 29.

From 6 to 8 p.m. in the museum at 116 Queenston St., consultants from Lord Cultural Resources will lead a discussion on RiverBrink’s future and the possibility of expanding the space.

“We’re just embarking on it now. We got a grant from Canadian Cultural Spaces and a private donation to help cover the cost,” said Debra Antoncic, RiverBrink’s director/curator.

“We felt that the best way to approach this would be through a feasibility study,” she said.

Before moving forward with any plans, she said they would need to determine if the community would support an expansion. A conversation with the community through an open house is the first step, followed by discussions with the staff and board of the museum.

She said if all goes well, the initial feasibility study should be complete by February.

At that time it should be decided if the museum will move forward with proposed growth.

As well as increasing space for collection showings, and adding rental spaces, Antoncic said accessibility is a concern the museum has been battling with.

“We have concerns about our accessibility. We have been working on this problem for a while now – we have our accessible ramp and our accessible washroom – the first floor is fully accessible. And we have a virtual tour for the upper and lower floors, but they’re still not accessible,” she said.

Antoncic said she encourages anyone in the community to come to the open house to join the discussion. If unable to attend, she suggests sending in questions or concerns to be addressed during the public meeting.

“We’re hoping that with this open house many of the community will come out, and some will have questions, some will have concerns, and I think all of that is very healthy to have that dialogue. I think fundamentally we have to ask: How important is having an art museum in Niagara-on-the-Lake?”

Members of the community can send questions and comments in confidence to info@lord.ca.

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