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Raleigh creates policy for public art displays

Posted November 5, 2014

In 2013, a group of more than 70 neighbors adorned the trees in Glenwood South with hand-knit sweaters. Photo courtesy of Glenwood South Neighborhood Collaborative
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— It started in December 2013 with tree sweaters on Glenwood South in a public right-of-way.

In the fall of 2013, a group of more than 70 neighbors, including City Councilor Bonner Gaylor, adorned the trees in Glenwood South with hand-knit sweaters

According to Gerald Bolas, the executive director in the Office of Raleigh Arts, no one saw it coming. The project had popped up on short notice, in the middle of winter, and because the sweaters were to be on public property, the only way the project could be authorized was through City Council approval. This triggered a debate about the best way for citizens to publicly display their artwork.

The debate reached its conclusion October 21, 2014, during the City Council meeting.

Citizens now have a clearly defined series of steps for featuring artwork on public property, whether that artwork is permanent or temporary, whether the artwork is featured on a public right-of-way or any other piece of public property.

“We wanted to define a process that empowers the city to work with citizens that have an idea for art on public property,” Bolas said.

The policy adopted on October 21 was worked on by both the Arts Commission and the Public Art and Design Board and is consistent with the Public Art Policy passed in 2011, which states that the Arts Commission has responsibility for the review and approval of temporary public art projects, while the Public Arts and Design Board has responsibility for the review and approval of permanent art projects with a value of $10,000 or greater.

To read more of this article, go to Raleigh Public Record.

WRAL.com has a content sharing partnership with Raleigh Public Record, a nonprofit online news organization focused on coverage of Raleigh and local government.


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  • Frizz Nov 5, 2014

    I beg your pardon. I've driven and walked down Hillsborough numerous times since the "upgrade" and I can't see that the millions spent have improved anything. There's nothing about that project that can be called an upgrade. If anything, the City took a bad situation and made it worse.

  • Progressiveredneck Nov 5, 2014

    I'd really like to see the City Council work on more important issues, like when they moved the bus routes back in August and have yet to update signs on the old routes - or maybe why the City of Raleigh spent hundreds of millions of dollars to upgrade Hillsborough Street with sidewalks, bus lanes, bus shelters, and then the City of Raleigh moved the bus route 3 blocks away down a side street that can barely accomodate a bus. Seems like a waste of millions of bucks to build a pedestrian/bus friendly corridor to take out the buses. These are the issues that need to be addressed, and when you do bring it up, they send it to transit that does not reply.