Botsford Station still a dream

Right next to Speedy Glass on Botsford Street sits a building that just might eventually house some of Metro Moncton’s best and brightest artistic minds. Dubbed Botsford Station, it is the sincere hopes of TBA Collective member Jonah Hache that the building and the space within it will eventually evolve to be capable of hosting a wide range of functions, including intimate music shows, film screenings and more.

Hache’s involvement and interest in the building started with a recommendation from an acquaintance. After checking the building out and meeting with building owners Dan Gillis and Alex Mercer on a few different occasions, Hache had a gut feeling that the 97 year old building would make a good home for his collective of musicians, artists and photographers.

“For me, Botsford Station is dreamland,” Hache says. “I see it as the place where a lot of the great minds I know get together, coordinate and carry out ideas, concepts and ways to improve our culture, city and lifestyles.”

The building is still a work in progress with Hache saying many of his Wednesday evenings are spent at the location painting or putting up drywall. And though the grunt work might not top anyone’s list of priorities, Hache says the progress that has been made in the past few months has give his the encouragement to drive forward.

“Seeing how much we have gotten done since just this past summer, it makes me feel like we can accomplish anything as long as we are willing to work towards it.

“We don’t have anything in the way of major funding for much of the ‘touch-up’ work that needs to be done so we are basically going step by step to restore the building. That being said, we have been fortunate to have received many good faith donations in the way of furniture, paint and roofing to fix some of the leaks that needed to be fixed.”

On Saturday evening, the TBA Collective will be hosting an acoustic cover show, featuring local musicians such as Marco Rocca (Hope, The Nuclear), Shawn Chiasson (The Motorleague, Speakerscam), Mario Gautreau and Phil Flowers. A variety of local photographers including Victoria Handysides, Marc “DJ Bones” Leblanc and Jocelyne Vautour will also have some of their live music photography on display. Proceeds from the evening will be invested back into the ongoing renovation of the complex.

Hache is looking forward to the day that he can put the paintbrushes away for good but feels extremely positive about the possibilities that lie within the building’s walls.

“To date, I think Moncton has had limited creative spaces where people can go,” he says, insinuating that he hopes the building will help to change that fate. “I did a lot of art at home for a long time and if you tangle your work life with your home life too much, you can definitely have a hard time separating the two. The eventuality of being in a building that will fuel my creative drive and let me go home at the end of the day is a great feeling.”

Article published in December 17, 2010 edition of the Times & Transcript