Friends of the Khyber is a collection of individuals who are organizing to champion and defend the rich history and significance of 1588 Barrington Street.
We believe that Halifax deserves a cultural and creative hub in a well-maintained, publicly-owned Khyber Building.
We have come together as Friends of the Khyber to champion and defend a space that inspires us, nurtures our aspirations, and brings us together to reflect and celebrate.We are individuals who have experimented in the Khyber, confronted adversity in the Khyber, danced in the Khyber, made art in the Khyber, filled the Khyber with sound, and discovered aspects of ourselves and our community in the Khyber.
We acknowledge the rich history that permeates 1588 Barrington Street as a crucial platform for the intersections of creativity and community that generate culture.
Friends of the Khyber includes members of the queer community, artists, activists, business owners, not-for profit organizations, historians, politicians and the public at large.
Anyone can be a Friend of the Khyber. Contact us if you would like to join our efforts.
Petition to the Halifax Regional Municipality Council regarding 1588 Barrington Street
WHEREAS a July 29 report from city staff to the Halifax Regional Council recommended that 1588 Barrington Street be declared surplus to be sold; and
WHEREAS the Khyber Arts Society has been the anchor tenant at 1588 Barrington Street since 1995 and from that location has made a significant cultural impact locally and nationally; and
WHEREAS the Halifax Regional Council previously voted in favour of 1588 Barrington Street being a cultural incubator (Halifax Regional Council minutes of 31 July 2007, 23 September 2008 and 10 August 2010); and
WHEREAS 1588 Barrington Street is of unique historical importance to the LGBTQ community in Halifax and continues to play an integral role for that community; and
WHEREAS deferred maintenance by the HRM as the building owner resulted in the considerable need for repair and accessibility-related renovations; therefore
WE, THE UNDERSIGNED, call on Halifax Regional Council to take the the following action:
- Reject the city staff recommendation to dispose of 1588 Barrington Street.
- Commit to renovating 1588 Barrington Street including, but not limited to, making all floors of the building wheelchair accessible by elevator and constructing wheelchair accessible, gender-neutral, single-stall washrooms.
- Consult with the Khyber Arts Society during renovations and reinstate the Khyber Arts Society as a key tenant when the renovations are complete.
- Follow through with the previous Halifax Regional Council commitment for 1588 Barrington Street to be a cultural incubator by seeking out tenants related to arts, culture and the queer history of the building, in consultation with community stakeholders and organizations representing artists and the LGBTQ community.