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Spaces for cultural activities and events in Ottawa

The City of Ottawa is building a Cultural Spaces Inventory.

“Cultural spaces”, for the purpose of this inventory, are facilities and hubs that provide the physical locations and infrastructure for cultural activities and events in Ottawa. This includes purpose-built cultural facilities (e.g. museums, galleries, theatres), but also the hundreds of other spaces that are used for cultural activities and events in Ottawa, such as recreation centres, schools, parks, churches, cafes, community centres, and many other spaces.

The need for the Cultural Spaces Inventory

This project follows a directive in the City of Ottawa’s new Official Plan (OP). The new OP states that:

“The City's inventory of local cultural assets will inform the evaluation of development proposals, support environmental assessments, and help identify cultural gaps and opportunities when preparing new local plans.”

The Cultural Spaces Inventory will ensure that these data are up-to-date and readily available to be used as part of planning processes.

Data gathering

Data gathering for the Cultural Spaces Inventory is underway.

The City of Ottawa has partnered with Apartment 613 Community Initiatives (Apt613). After years of writing about cultural activities and events in Ottawa, Apt613 has a large amount of unstructured data that they are now organizing to support the inventory. They are also aggregating data from other sources. In addition, Apt613 will be reaching out to the community to gather more information about spaces that are used (or have been used) for cultural activities and events. Stay tuned!


Apt613 will turn over the data they have compiled to the City of Ottawa by the end of 2022. The City will develop a plan for the ongoing upkeep of the inventory to ensure that the data remain current.

Municipal Commemoration Policy Development

As part of its cultural development mandate, the City of Ottawa is developing an updated, comprehensive municipal commemoration policy to guide commemorative programs and activities in our city.

Diverse stories, histories, cultures, communities, and legacies abound in Ottawa. Remembering Ottawa: Stories and Legacies will ensure that these collective and compelling memories are honoured.

The policy development is being led by the Cultural Development and Initiatives Unit of the Recreation, Cultural and Facility Services Department in strategic cultural partnership with cultural organizations in Ottawa.

A representative Municipal Commemoration Policy Advisory Group is providing high-level guidance and support. The group is composed of 10 full members (residents with deep knowledge of Ottawa history and cultures joined by memory study specialists, all from diverse professional, cultural and linguistic backgrounds) as well as four non-voting seats representing City of Ottawa stakeholder departments.

A variety of public engagement activities include:

  • A virtual engagement session with Anishinabe Algonquin Host Nation representatives.
  • Further Indigenous engagement activities to receive input from the Anishinabe Algonquin Host Nation as well as from Urban First Nations, Inuit and Métis individuals and communities.
  • A bilingual public engagement session to build awareness and to receive resident input and feedback.
  • An Engage Ottawa page to provide information on the project and to ask Ottawa residents for feedback on key questions related to the policy.

In addition to these engagement activities, a survey of past and existing City of Ottawa commemorative programs and policies is being conducted, with input from the public, to identify gaps, opportunities and obstacles for implementation of the new policy.

You are invited to follow the development of the policy, submit your ideas, and participate in other engagement activities by visiting Remembering Ottawa: Stories and Legacies on the Engage Ottawa website.

For inquiries about the municipal commemoration policy development project, please contact

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