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Join us in demanding access and inclusion while the community works on revised plan for W2 with the City and its supporters. Tell the City of Vancouver to stop leaving artists, inner-city residents and Indigenous organizations out in the cold.
For over two months, the W2 community amenity at the Woodward’s Heritage Building has been effectively shut down.
This vital hub for inner-city artists and community activists, including many Indigenous groups and individuals, was hard-fought for by the grassroots - in fact this amenity was the reason the Woodward’s development was allowed to proceed. This attempt at evicting the W2 community is part of a broader trend that sees community and cultural spaces under attack in Vancouver. The City is passing motions “that Vancouver preserves and expands upon its dynamic culture” so let’s protect W2 and ensure a Vancouver for all.
While other community centres are paid to operate, W2 was growing with 80% self funding. Nester’s and London Drugs are being helped with 10-year start-up tax holiday. W2 needs fair treatment.
The City is a partner with W2 in delivering an inclusive community space and must continue to work with W2 to restructure in a way that protects the innovative and grassroots qualities of the project. The community needs to be at the centre of this.
We are encouraging the City to ensure the W2 community can continue to develop a community media arts centre at Woodward's despite Feb 28 eviction notices being served. If all goes well in coming weeks, the W2 community will be back in the Woodward's heritage building, as our negotiations and restructuring is having some effect.
After consultation with individuals and groups who have used and depended on the W2 amenity, the W2 community and its supporters are joining together with the following demands.
1. Stop the eviction of W2.
Continue negotiation of fair lease terms with democratic representation from the W2 community.
2. Waive the amenity fee.
W2 is the only community-access space in the $400 million Woodward’s development. The amenity should not be evicted in its first year for not paying the developer’s $85,000 amenity fee.
3. Open the building now as the community works on a renewed model with the City and supporters.
Provide much-needed public access to the space.
If you haven't watched our community video check it out:
An article in Megaphone provides some update: " Future Unknown: The status of arts hub W2 remains uncertain " as well as an article from rabble.ca shows W2 in a broader context: "From the Waldorf to W2: Vancouver's disappearing arts and community...."
Meanwhile we're busy programming OUTSIDE the building until a new agreement is in place. Check out our daily radio show, W2 Media Mornings, www.w2media.ca and our weekly W2TV show on Shaw. Here's an online clip explaining our crossmedia strategy: That is a small portion from this week's show airing on Shaw Cable 4 and repeating four times (Saturdays 2pm and 11pm, Sundays 10pm, Tuesday at 2am).
We're up in Kamloops for our VIMAF Tour with indigenous AfterDark (featuring Take 5, Skookum Soundsystem, and Kamloop's Black Out Artists) and Alanis Obomsawin's film on Attawapisket and panel discussion on IdleNoMore. facebook event page
We have a co-fundraiser with urban ink productions at underG Studios (beneath BeatStreet) featuring Will Eede, Self Evident, and a dozen hip hop artists and slam poets. facebook event page
We are co-producing with VIMAF an IdleNoMore event at SFU Woodwards (Saturday night, 7:30-10pm) featuring speakers and film screening of Alanis Obomsawin's exploration of Attawapisket.
Vadim and guests at Fortune Sound Club!! A Sunday night fundraiser for W2, featuring hiphop, trip hop and bass beats from many of our friends in the Vancouver music scene. facebook event page
Feb 21-24 IdleNoMore Weekend
Feb 21: A Tribe Called Red with plenty of guests. Full info on the facebook event page
Feb 22: W2TV studio production at the Maritime Labour Centre featuring Pam Palmater.
+ That night another Indigenous AfterDark, this time the EastVan Rez Edition, featuring Skookum Soundsystem and guests TBA.