Design Competition for New Art Gallery

Image: Courtesy of Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

Architectural teams from around the globe are invited to participate in a design competition for a new provincial art gallery.

The kickoff of an international design competition represents a big step toward a new art gallery for all Nova Scotians, which will be part of a new arts district on the Halifax Waterfront.

“We are embarking on an exciting phase of the project to build Nova Scotia’s new waterfront art gallery and public space,” said Communities, Culture and Heritage Minister, Leo Glavine. “Our commitment speaks to the important contributions the arts make to our communities and to our economy.”

The design competition, which is the first of its magnitude for the province, is expected to last six months and will take place in two stages. In summer 2020, during the final stage of the competition, the field will be narrowed to three design teams before a qualified jury selects the winning team. The conceptual designs of all finalists will be on public display for feedback which will be provided to the winning design team.

The new, iconic art gallery and vibrant public space will provide access to art, culture, world class exhibitions, events and programming for all Nova Scotians and visitors to the province.

Quick Facts:

  • the design competition will be open to local, national and international teams and will take place over a six-month period
  • stage one of the competition is a call for qualifications and interviews with the top qualified candidates
  • stage two is the formal design competition where short-listed firms will create conceptual designs for the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia and surrounding public space
  • the final design team will be chosen by a qualified jury of professionals, including architects and museum professionals, in summer 2020
  • the successful design team will carry out an ongoing 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:

For the request for proposal document and project brief visit:

Art Gallery of Nova Scotia building website:

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Damian Holmes is the Founder and Editor of World Landscape Architecture (WLA). He is a registered landscape architect (AILA) working in international design practice in Australia. Damian founded WLA in 2007 to provide a website for landscape architects written by landscape architects. Connect on Linkedin at