Funding cloud over Belfast’s Metropolitan Arts Centre
It is currently a concrete shell surrounded by scaffolding and looks like any building site.
But in just a year’s time the St Anne’s Square site in Belfast’s Cathedral Quarter will be one of the most exciting arts projects ever in Northern Ireland.
But concern has again been expressed about whether there will be enough funding to make it work to its full potential
The landmark Metropolitan Arts Centre (MAC), which has created 400 construction jobs over two years, is due to be handed over in November 2011.
When finished the £17.5m six-storey building will boast the largest visual arts space in Northern Ireland, two theatres, a dance studio, as well as workshops and community space.
But those involved in the project have expressed concerns over funding once it opens in 2012. MAC chief executive Anne McReynolds said that it would be a “waste” and a “disgrace” if enough funding was not provided.
“It’s inconceivable that having invested so significantly in the capital that the funders involved wouldn’t then appropriately resource what was actually going on in the building.”