The Redevelopment Agency of Salt Lake City (RDA) and Salt Lake City Arts Council has announced a request for qualifications (RFQ) for a public art project on Downtown’s Regent Street. This project is the crowning piece of Regent’s redevelopment — a public art installation that will formalize the street as the core of a thriving arts and cultural district and enhance Salt Lake City’s tourist and economic potential for decades to come.
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“The RDA’s redevelopment and rise of Regent Street has created a welcoming, dynamic urban environment that mixes the historical with the contemporary,” says Lara Fritts, director of the Department of Economic Development.
It will become a hub for unexpected experiences with permanent public artwork. The spaces were designed to host festivals, performances and interactive opportunities. Regent Street will likely also become the place for locally-owned restaurants, clubs, bars and boutiques as well as a mixture of surprising micro-shops and specialty food carts.
Creative businesses play a huge part in Salt Lake City’s economy. And it’s no secret that the arts and culture scene is an important economic driver. The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation conducted a “Soul of the Community” study where researchers analyzed the connection between community attachment and economic growth and found that cities with the highest levels of attachment had the highest rate of GDP growth. The three-year study discovered the key reasons were entertainment and social offerings, how welcoming the city is and its aesthetics — in other words, the arts and culture.
In creative placemaking, partners from public, private, nonprofit and community sectors strategically shape the physical and social character of a neighborhood around arts and cultural activities. Eccles Theater has become that anchor which has created an exciting development opportunity to revitalize Regent Street, one of downtown Salt Lake City’s most interesting streets.
Karen Krieger, Executive Director at Salt Lake City Arts Council says, “Eccles Theater has 2,500 people show up at seven o’clock and leave at eleven o’clock. A museum might have 500 visitors spread out over the course of a day. The rehearsal studio might have 30 people coming and going every hour over 12 hours. Throw in the area workforce nearby and, all of a sudden, you have a full day of positive foot traffic on a street — feet that belong to urban explorers who need to eat meals, go shopping and take public transportation.”
The RFQ submission deadline is Wednesday, February 7, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. MDT. Full application information can be found at www.callforentry.org/festivals_unique_info.php?ID=4851.
The Redevelopment Agency of Salt Lake City works with communities to implement Salt Lake City’s master plans to create vital housing opportunities, improve infrastructure, and participate in the economic development of the City. For more information on RDA projects and programs, go to http://www.slcrda.com.
The Salt Lake City Arts Council is a community-established arts organization that provides public programming and support for the arts. The organization both produces internal programs and supports other arts activities and groups throughout Salt Lake City. For more information, please visit http://www.saltlakearts.org.