In February, 1994, the PEI Council of the Arts acquired the Royal Bank Building at the corner of Richmond & Queen Streets in Charlottetown, PEI, the current location of The Guild.
The intent was to convert the building from a bank into an arts/cultural centre designed to house a theatre, a gallery, studio working space for existing and emerging artists, as well as office space for the PEI Council of the Arts and other non-profit cultural organizations.
Initially, the facility was incorporated as a for-profit entity, operating as The Arts Guild, with the expectation to become financially sustainable and have the capacity to generate annual revenues that would meet its operational and capital requirements.
However, throughout the 10-year period that followed, various challenges and limitations proved to be daunting to the new managers of the building therefore, the original intentions for the space were not met.
In 2004, a new non-profit corporation (ARS LONGA Inc.) was formed and a 6-member Board of Directors was appointed by the signatories of the original Memorandum of Understanding, signed by the Province of PEI, the City of Charlottetown, The PEI Council of the Arts. The new corporation currently operates as “The Guild” and runs all aspects of the building’s operations.
In July, 2005, operations of The Guild began under a new Mission and Vision set out by the Board of Directors and which directs the operation of the facility to this day.
Members of the Board of Directors continue to work in concert with the Executive Director of The Guild to achieve long term success; specifically, to enable greater participation and inclusion for all the vibrant cultural community on Prince Edward Island.