Once the cold hits Nova Scotia, people tend to hibernate in their homes. Streets become quiet, local businesses are sparsely filled, and all because we cannot bear to spend time exposed to the winter weather. Simply stated, people stop being active and opt to drive, even short distances, in the winter. Winter weather acts as a stubborn barrier for getting people outside, enjoying their city, and connecting with each other.
The Warming Hut will make being outdoors more comfortable and attractive during all seasons but especially during the winter, by providing a space to temporarily escape the weather in Kentville. Winnipeg, Edmonton, Saskatoon, and Toronto are examples of cities that have completed successful warming hut projects.
The Warming Hut will provide a safe and energy-efficient space to warm-up, whether community members are out for a stroll, walking between errands, or headed home. The Warming Hut will have interpretive panels on the inside telling stories of the history of Black Loyalists in the community, which we hope facilitates conversations between community members. The Warming Hut will encourage people to connect with their community, enable people to be active in Kentville more frequently, and reduce social isolation during the cold winter months. As an enticing and engaging form of public art, we hope to challenge people’s curiosity and encourage connection with others to reduce social isolation that often comes along with the winter months.
We would like to thank all our project partners who are part of the process to turn this idea into a reality. We are thankful for the Town of Kentville, who has been instrumental in helping coordinate the project, and for our primary funding partner ACOA for financially supporting the project through the Innovative Communities Fund. We are working with more groups in the community engagement process and can’t wait to share more soon. Please check back in the coming months for more details including location, and construction dates.