Yesterday marked a momentous occasion for Harrow Arts Centre (HAC) as the doors of its new multi-space building were officially opened to the public.
The grand unveiling was carried out by the Mayor of Harrow, Cllr Ramji Chauhan, along with several local councillors, and representatives from the London Borough of Harrow and the Greater London Authority (GLA). The new building, known as the Greenhill building, is a result of the second phase of the HAC Good Growth Fund programme, with a joint investment of £4 million from the London Borough of Harrow and the GLA’s Good Growth Fund (GGF).
Designed by the renowned Chris Dyson Architects, the Greenhill building boasts a stunning L-shaped design, providing ample space for various activities and classes. Among its highlights are spacious studios perfect for dance, theatre, fitness classes, and other creative endeavours. The versatile downstairs studios, along with an adjoining courtyard, will also be available for hire, catering to events such as birthday parties, corporate functions, and other special celebrations.
The Greenhill building replaces a dilapidated portacabin and showcases cutting-edge sustainability features, being fully electric and built on a natural ventilation model to ensure optimal energy efficiency. This aligns with the broader mission of HAC to promote sustainability and reduce Harrow’s carbon footprint. The art centre has made strides in this direction by installing 65 Solar Panels and eight air-source heat pumps across the site.
The project aims to shift away from reliance on fossil fuels and embrace electricity-powered heating, significantly reducing gas usage and expected to save a remarkable 57 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year.
The development of the Greenhill building is a significant milestone in the Good Growth Fund programme at HAC, catering to the increasing demand for versatile, bookable spaces.
These expanded facilities, which include additional multi-use rooms, workspaces, artists’ studios, and a dance studio, are expected to make HAC self-financing, ensuring the centre’s sustainability for years to come.
Councillor Jean Lammiman, Portfolio Holder for Community and Culture, commented on the completion of the project. She said, “I know how much our residents love and value the arts centre. In seeing the new building and refurbished facilities, I am extremely pleased with what has been delivered.”
She further added, “Last year we had over 11,500 classes and workshops held at HAC, so the demand for modern multi-use and creative spaces in Harrow is very clear. I hope our residents will enjoy using our new and modern facilities.”
The grand opening of the Greenhill building brought together various local groups that utilise HAC’s facilities, all excited to explore the new and renovated spaces created in the first phase of the HAC GGF programme. The ribbon-cutting ceremony marked the beginning of a new chapter for Harrow Arts Centre, as it continues to serve as a vibrant hub for creativity and community engagement.
With its commitment to environmental sustainability and the provision of top-notch multi-use facilities, Harrow Arts Centre remains at the forefront of artistic development in the region, promising an exciting future for both artists and visitors alike.