News release

Conceptual Designs for New Art Gallery and Waterfront Arts District Unveiled

Nova Scotians can now see and provide feedback on the three final conceptual designs for the planned new art gallery and waterfront arts district in Halifax.

Today, Sept. 21, the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia launched the Design Competition Exhibition, which runs until late October and features 3D models, renderings and detailed submissions by three shortlisted design teams. As part of the public engagement process, Nova Scotians will have an opportunity to share their feedback on each of the design approaches and concepts.

“A new gallery and waterfront arts district reflects the importance of art and culture to our communities and our lives,” said Leo Glavine, Minister of Communities, Culture and Heritage. “This gallery belongs to all Nova Scotians, and I encourage everyone to visit the exhibit in person or online and share their feedback.”

Public feedback gathered during the exhibition will be considered in the development of the project. Following the selection of the winning team, further community engagement will take place across the province.

The public can also view and comment on the submissions online at . The submissions will be posted later today. On Sept. 24 at 6 p.m., the three final teams will present their designs through a livestream on the gallery YouTube Channel and on the website.


The Art Gallery of Nova Scotia has a history that dates back to 1908, yet Nova Scotia has never had a purpose-built provincial art gallery. Today marks a major milestone for the arts and cultural sector in Nova Scotia. The three design teams have delivered concepts that reinvent the idea of an art gallery and arts district. We hope that all Nova Scotians will engage with us throughout this process to ensure that we have a space that is reflective of all communities in our province. Nancy Noble, director and CEO, Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

Community participation in the work to create a new arts district is critical to ensure what we build reflects us all and is a place where everyone can belong. We encourage Nova Scotians to engage in these early concepts over the next few weeks, to share their ideas big and small, and to help shape this inclusive place for art and community. Once the successful design team is selected, we’ll look forward to engaging with the community again. Jennifer Angel, president and CEO, Develop Nova Scotia

Quick Facts:

  • the three finalist designs are the result of a six-month, international design competition - the first of its magnitude in Nova Scotia
  • the three teams participating in stage two of the design competition are Architecture49 with Diller Scofidio + Renfro and Hargreaves Jones; DIALOG, Acre Architects, Brackish Design Studio and Shannon Webb-Campbell; KPMB Architects with Omar Gandhi Architect, Jordan Bennett Studio, Elder Lorraine Whitman (NWAC), Public Work and Transsolar
  • the winning submission will be chosen in October by a qualified jury of professionals, including architects, a landscape architect, artists and museum professionals
  • the successful design team will carry out a provincewide public engagement process
  • in April 2019, the Government of Canada announced an investment of $30 million in the new Art Gallery of Nova Scotia project through the New Building Canada Fund-Provincial-Territorial Infrastructure Component, National and Regional Projects
  • the Province of Nova Scotia has committed $70 million towards this project

Additional Resources:

Art Gallery of Nova Scotia building website:

Nova Scotia’s Culture Action Plan