Jon Anne Willow

Public comment opportunity on Streetscape Project Tuesday morning

By - Apr 13th, 2009 02:18 pm

On Tuesday, April 14 at 8 a.m., Milwaukee’s Public Works Committee (in City Hall Room 301-B) will again be considering the Janet Zweig proposal for the Streetscape Arts Project. Public comment is invited. This Committee will vote up or down on the project. Procedurally, it is likely to be taken out of Committee (no matter what the vote) and moved to the Common Council – which meets at 9 a.m. on Tuesday.  Public comment is not allowed at a Common Council meeting, but it is open to attendance.

Emails and phone calls to the Aldermen are critically important, particularly if they come from a constituent. Please make lots of contact, and get your friends to do the same. Here is the Council website:

If you are interested, here is the body of the letter we sent to each Alderman:

We believe that a strong public art program raises our creative capital. Milwaukee’s image as an innovative city with a vibrant arts community and top-notch creative assets is critical to whether or not we can recruit talent to move here, or get good employees to stay here.  Having a strong public arts program is one step toward improving the image of Milwaukee, which doesn’t always get the credit it deserves for our arts and culture assets and amenities.

This public art process was put in to place years ago and the project has been moving forward according to all of the guidelines. The money has already been approved. The public art committee was comprised of people with the background and commitment of the public interest to make an artist choice that will serve our community well and meet the budgetary requirements.

The chosen artist, Janet Zweig, has committed to spend the $60,000 matching dollars being approved with local artists, thereby giving very valuable jobs to our city and helping to make the project community-relevant. Furthermore, she has a stellar international reputation for her work and a Milwaukee background.

We don’t need to personally like every piece of public art that we vote for – that is a good thing!  Art is a matter of preference.  You just need to like the idea of crafting a first-class city that can compete in these trying economic times.  Art goes hand in hand with better transportation, business development and all of the other efforts to bolster our economy. We appreciate all that you do to make this a better place to live, work, play and learn. We, the creative industries, are equally committed to making this a better place for all – and to bring lots more people and business. Diverse, creative expression is an important component to our city’s attraction

Thank you. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Christine Harris
President and Executive Director
Cultural Alliance of Greater Milwaukee
648 N. Plankinton Ave Suite 425
Milwaukee, WI 53203

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