$250,000 NEA grant to help build 'Main Terrain' art park on Southside

$250,000 NEA grant to help build 'Main Terrain' art park on Southside

July 13th, 2011 by Barry Courter in Local - Breaking News

A $250,000 Arts Works grant from the National Endowment for the Arts will be used to create the Main Terrain, a new urban park off of Main Street, according to an announcement by the NEA Tuesday.

The money comes from the inaugural round of "Our Town" funding from the NEA, which awarded $6.575 million to 51 communities in 34 states. The grants, ranging from $2,000 to $250,000, were awarded to communities that have created public-private partnerships designed to improve the arts while impacting "the social, physical and economic characters of their neighborhoods, towns, cities and regions, according to NEA Chairman Rocco Landesman.

Landesman and NEA Director of Design Jason Schupbach addressed members of the media and representatives of the various grant recipients Tuesday during a conference call and webinar

"Creative placemaking is a strategy for making places vibrant. Arts and design are essential parts of the complex work of building a livable, sustainable community," Schupbach said.

The urban park will feature as many as five iconic interactive sculptures that encourage physical play and fitness, according to the NEA news release.

Allied Arts of Greater Chattanooga will be the "fiscal agent" for the project, according to Rodney Van Valkenburg, director of communications for Allied Arts. Peggy Townsend of Public Arts Chattanooga will serve as project manager and several other city agencies, including Public works, will have roles in building the park, he said.

Read more in Thursday's Times Free Press.

Contact Barry Courter at bcourter@timesfreepress.com or at 423-757-6354.