HALIFAX -- A major announcement is coming Thursday on the future of the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia.

Premier Stephen McNeil and federal cabinet minister Bernadette Jordan will unveil plans in an event at the Halifax gallery with its CEO and director, Nancy Noble.

McNeil has said Halifax needs a new art gallery to house collections from "world renowned" artists ranging from Alex Colville to folk painter Maud Lewis.

Last June, the province announced that Halifax's Architecture49 had been given a $250,000 contract to prepare a facility plan for a "cultural hub" on the waterfront that would include the art gallery as well as NSCAD University, the provincial art and design school.

The province said at the time the proposed building will "help position Nova Scotia as a world leader in the visual arts."

A feasibility study said the art college and art gallery "have both long endured inadequate, inefficient and expensive to operate buildings."

It said both institutions were seeking new sites and "contemplating a co-location on the Salter Block of the Halifax central waterfront."

"It is an opportunity to transform a parking lot on the waterfront of Halifax into a dynamic destination for creative innovation and contribute to the profound transformational changes remaking the city," the study, by Lord Cultural Resources, said.