Sunday, August 22, 2010

Pomona Public Art Policy

A Pomona Public Art Policy that has been five years in the making is winding its way through Pomona's labyrinth of bureaucracy with at least one more visit to the Planning Commission, then on to the City Council sometime in September or October for approval, hopefully.

Pomona hopes to encourage public art Planning commissioners to review draft proposal Monica Rodriguez, Staff Writer for the Daily

BulletinPOMONA - After years of work, a draft policy proposal for an art in public places program has been presented to the Planning Commission. The presentation was made at a Planning Commission study session earlier this month with a goal of collecting the opinions of commission members so Planning Department personnel can continue refining the document, which has already been presented to the city's Cultural Arts Commission. The draft has been developed following two years of meetings with members of the Downtown Property Owners Association art subcommittee and the Cultural Arts Commission, according to a city staff report. According to a draft Art in Public Places Polices and Guidelines Manual, such a program would provide a means to gain a greater understanding and enjoyment of art and encourage interaction among residents, business owners, art patrons and visitors. In addition, the city would develop quality and diverse art for the enrichment of Pomona residents, contribute to civic pride, encourage artistic creativity, promote Pomona as a leader in art in public places, attract business and tourism to the city and encourage involvement by residents of all socioeconomic and ethnic groups, the draft document said. The programs would contain guidelines that developers would follow for the inclusion of public art in their projects. Developers would have the option of including the public art in their project or contribute funds that would be used to develop public art projects. Under the draft proposal, painted murals, mosaics, sculptures and artist-designed fountains would be among the acceptable public art pieces. Artist-designed landscaping would also be a form of art, Senior Planner Sandra Campbell told the commission. As part of this program, an original artwork mural ordinance would be developed meant to "improve the aesthetics of the community," the city staff report said. As it is now, some businesses have "painted artistic scenes" on the walls of their establishments, said Planning Manager Brad Johnson. "We want to encourage that, but we want to encourage (they) go through a process," he said. Among commissioners' concerns was that they hope a broad range of artists have the opportunity to participate in the program. Other commissioners said opportunities for members of the public, beyond those with an art background, participate in the review and selection of art proposals for inclusion in the program. The draft proposal will return to the Planning Commission for a public hearing and further discussion at its Sept. 8 meeting.


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