New buildings and projects in Maple Ridge will get new five new pieces of public art, council decided Tuesday.
The new Albion Community Centre, which opens on 104th Avenue next year, as well as the new synthetic sports fields and field house next to Thomas Haney secondary, the renovated Hammond Community Centre, and new sidewalks on Lougheed Highway near 226th Street and 224th Street in the downtown will be the next locations for new artistic works.
The locations meet the criteria of being highly visible with lots of pedestrian access, near public, open spaces.
The new art all will be integrated into each project as construction proceeds instead of being stand-alone displays, said Yvonne Chui, arts and community manager with the city.
“This is much better as things are being built.”
Chui said that approach was followed with the public art component that was part of the recently opened Karina LeBlanc Field at Merkley Park.
As for the new public art sites just approved, Chui said: “The next step is really working with the different areas and looking at what that project can be.”
She pointed out that community and public participation is part of the art selection process. A panel of local residents, along with one or two public art steering committee members, will make the final decision about what piece of art is selected.
“It’s all about the people. It’s really important that we hear from them.”
For instance, students at nearby Maple Ridge secondary were involved in the design for the Karina LeBlanc Field.
The public art steering committee has also recently selected the two artists who will do the public art component for the $10-million renovation of the Maple Ridge Leisure Centre pool area. That will consist of three, glass mosaic panels installed in the new complex.
The city will hold community workshops this fall, when the artists will brainstorm with users and residents about the type of designs they’d like to see at the renovated aquatic area.
A staff report says the aim of public art is to create “greater sense of public place … and represents opportunities to tell our community’s stories.”
Several pieces of public art are already in place around Maple Ridge: a bronze-and-stainless steel sculpture titled Tendence is outside the Maple Ridge Leisure Centre; an aluminum-and-glass sculpture titled Balance adorns the city’s main corner at Lougheed Highway and 224th Street; while sidewalk poems are embedded into concrete around downtown.
Another piece of art, titled Bloom, is at Whonnock Lake. Mosaic tiles with historical notes also are installed in the downtown’s sidewalks, while the Sea to Sky Eagle is outside Maple Ridge city hall.