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A Vision and expression of interest for the cinema at the arts centre christchurch

The Arts Centre - Christchurch, New Zealand
Research, Insights, Strategy

The Arts Centre in the heart of Christchurch fosters, promotes and facilitates interest and involvement in art, culture, creativity, the creative industries and education. Arguably New Zealand’s most important collection of heritage buildings, this vibrant precinct has been an integral part of bringing life back to the CBD post the devastating earthquakes, creating a cultural heart for Canterbury, and restoring community pride in the city. 

Based upon a long-standing relationship with the Arts Centre, Left Bank Co. was engaged to take the creative precinct on a strategic journey to build a vision for a boutique cinema and bar located within one of the Arts Centre's historic buildings. Drawing on the expertise of our Senior Strategist Hahna Busch, who once managed a much-loved arthouse cinema venue in Sydney, this project also examined possible operational business models in order to assist the Arts Centre in shaping a business case for establishing and running this cinema.

Through a process of engagement with Arts Centre leadership, research, site visits and benchmarking, Left Bank Co. developed a vision for the Arts Centre venue as a centre for the celebration of cinema, moving image and digital arts, from the classic through to the contemporary. A range of business models were also explored, developed, and assessed in order to provide guidance and recommendations to the Arts Centre Trust, where the decision was made to engage an external operator to lead the venue.

Left Bank Co. then developed up an expression of interest process and invitation to invite operators to demonstrate their interest in the opportunity, putting together a comprehensive EOI document for distribution. This document was carefully developed and designed to communicate the work already done to date and show the Arts Centre's expectations around the operations of the venue. This was balanced with an enticing offer to attract respondents and give them the opportunity to demonstrate their creativity and ideas for the cinema.

The EOI was released in July 2018, with the aim to identify an operator and have the venue in operation by id 2019.