Al Di Meola We arrived early, as usual, at the concert hall and found a parking space just across the street from the hall.
But arts and culture can extend far beyond the performance or physical structures we typically recognize as art. These three cities in Alabama, California, and Indiana are engaging with community members, building local capacity for civic engagement, and helping build bridges of collaboration by using arts and culture in transportation projects.
Dothan, Alabama Dothan has been working to shift its culture of planning, transportation, and community engagement towards one that focuses on infrastructure for mobility and walkability. Highway 84 is a suburban arterial road focused on moving cars as fast as possible, and lacks sidewalks, bike lanes, and crosswalks.
The highway is an important corridor, yet it lacks even basic infrastructure that would allow people to walk or bike safely along the highway. Hayes will focus on using art as a means for social engagement and community building with the aim of building long-term and trusting relationships between Dothan and its lower-income communities.
Such partnerships will serve as strong and valuable assets in the future arena of funding procurement for public infrastructure. This construction has been especially disheartening to Hyde Park residents, as many in the community opposed the at-grade light rail construction and favored an underground alignment instead which would have been less intrusive, but far more expensive.
Despite the fact that artists from around the world applied for the position, the panel chose local artists from Hyde Park who could personally relate to and understand the community.
Artists Moses Ball and Dezmond Crockett facilitated the Stories Summit where Hyde Park residents shared their experiences living, working, and growing up in the community. Permanent creative placemaking projects that are currently in the works include light pole medallions and a mural, as well as an ambitious 1.
An important component of improving access is the creative placemaking that was included in the Marion County Transit Plan. Through storytelling, videography, signage, and other creative mediums, artists are working to promote public transit in even the most isolated and auto-dependent communities.
Each of the artists bring their own unique skills and experiences to each project. Big Car Collaborative is using wayfinding to highlight destinations, like schools, pharmacies, recreation centers, and grocery stores within a mile of the four Southside transit stops. The artists met regularly during the development phase of their projects, which helped the artists learn from each other and build their capacity to work at the intersection of civic engagement, arts, and transportation.
Read more about what the artists are doing around the soon-to-be bus stops here. This is not the first time that T4America has worked directly with cities interested in using art to produce better transportation projects.
Over a two-year period, more than 20 creative placemaking projects—focusing on issues like transportation, anti-displacement, economic development, and social justice—covered 23 neighborhoods in North, Northeast, and Southeast Portland. Check out this interactive placemaking map that was created in partnership with the Portland State University Geography Department.Jan 13, · Create the Future) which was about the best ways to navigate the unknown, we went looking for people who had done it successfully.
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