Airdrie's City Council will be led by the City's administration in a workshop-style session during a Council Strategy meeting to choose the name of the now under-construction new library and multi-use facility. The name will be announced publicly at a later day.

The decision was made after Michelle Lock of the City's Community Services Department presented to the council procedural options to name the facility, as well as approaches to considering the facility names. On Tuesday, the City Council did mull over potential name ideas that were presented to them. 

Lock pointed out that the current name of the facility is temporary. 

"The project title, Airdrie Multi-use Facility and Library (AMUFL), was a temporary name to identify the project that needs to be replaced with a Council-approved name that generates clarity on the facility’s focus of creating community connections, continuous learning, arts & culture development, and gathering spaces," city documents stated

Lock presented several options with regard to the name of the facility, some which were more literal, others which were more abstract.

"The literal names on the left-hand side [of the PowerPoint slide presentation] speak to the purpose and the activities that will occur in the facility some are more specific," Lock explained.

These names included: 

  • Airdrie Library & Learning Commons
  • Central Library & Learning Hub
  • Library and Culture Centre
  • Nose Creek Cultural Centre
  • Central Arts & Learning Hub
  • Arts & Culture Commons
  • Learning & Culture Centre 
  • Airdrie Arts & Learning Centre 

The abstract names are meant to be more creative and meant to be more inspirational branding for the facility. Some of the abstract names include:

  • A Block (A as in Airdrie) – Arts and Culture Hub, building on the gateway of the downtown and the concept of a hub to connect people with place and knowledge.
  • The Hive – Arts, learning and connections. A hive is an effective center of activity to support a network of people gathering for a common purpose.  
  • Airdrie Axis – A central point or line where arts, learning and gathering converge.
  • The Link – Linking the relationship between people and knowledge, links with each other that supports relationships.
  • The Allure Centre – A play on luring/tempting/drawing/pulling citizens to the facility to learn and connect. Quality of being powerfully and mysteriously fascinating.  
  • The Lodestone / The Lodestar – A naturally occurring magnet / a navigation reference pole, for learning, connection and gathering.
  • Evolve – Individuals evolving with knowledge and learning, the City evolving with more amenities and support for its citizens, and the evolution of the relationships and networking this facility will help support.
  • Enrichment Commons – Enrichment center around the enrichment of the individual, the small groups and the community as a whole that this facility can support. 

During deliberations, Councillor Heather Spearman added that she would also like to see Indigenous consultation during the council strategy sessions.

"The fact that we're building it on Nose Creek, which is a really important spot, the fact that we've made accommodations throughout the building and design to accommodate indigenous consultation; I just think that it would make sense to carry that through to potentially the naming aspect as well."

Councillor Candice Kolson also voiced her support for Indigenous consultation in the naming process. Councillor Tina Petrow voiced support for naming the Facility The Hive.

"The Hive - that just feels like home to me, and it's like bees everywhere. I love it. We get pollinator gardens... But yes, I agree the workshop is really that sits well with me."

Councillor Darrell Belyk was also in favour of the workshop, though he did not take to one of the names on the list.

"I saw the abstract names - A Block sounds like a prison. I'd go for the workshop as well with councillors coming in with a couple of suggestions and maybe something evolves from that suggestion."

Deputy Mayor and Councillor Ron Chapman emphasized that he would like to see more than just the library represented in the facility's name.

"I would envision something like the Airdrie Public Library at the Hive because it's more than just the Airdrie Public Library. I would like a catchy name for the facility."

Councillor Al Jones did raise concerns about the naming process.

"It's a learning Cultural Center. If there are no naming rights, it's the Airdrie Learning and Cultural Center. If there's naming rights, it's the Kraft or Nestlé... Cultural Center," Councillor Jones said. "We didn't do this with the Rec[reational] Center. It was the Airdrie Rec Center; the East Lake Rec Center. We didn't give it a name like The Hub. I'm not sure why we're spending money and time on this."

Mayor Brown, however, pointed out that the naming of the facility and the procedural options were in reference to the policy which council approved.

"This is the option that's coming from ourselves," Mayor Brown said.

Lock underlined that there are a number of factors and considerations as well as opportunities when considering a name for a public facility. 

"When naming a public facility, it reflects the purpose and the identity of that building. It shapes the future of the facility and how it will be perceived by the community," Lock said. "The name often builds a sense of relationship and connection with our community and is a source of pride for the facility."

The new facility will be 73,000 square feet with 53,000 allocated for the library and 20,000 for the multi-use space, costing roughly $65 Million. The facility will have an underground parkade with approximately 100 stalls as well as ground-level parking.

The opening of the new Library and Multi-Use Facility is currently set for 2025 and is being constructed on the site of Airdrie’s old fire hall located on Main Street SE.

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