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Together, We See Sparks

In 2015, the City of Sparks began one of the largest redevelopment project in its history in downtown Victorian Square.  Planned for completion by 2022, a six-square-block area of downtown Sparks called Victorian square will be transformed into housing (apartments and condos) for 5,000 new residents, new restaurants and retail spaces, an event venue, a central plaza and gathering space. The city’s has allocated funding for a new streetscape plan includes new public sidewalks, planters, curbs, and landscaping. A portion of the streetscape plan allocated a portion or budget for art.

To leverage the arts, culture, and creativity to help drive this change, growth and transformation, the city was awarded a National Endowment for the Arts Our Town Grant in 2016 to create an art master plan for the area.  This planning process and the implementation of the plan relies heavily on community input using the creative placemaking model.

The project is called: TOGETHER, we see Sparks.

See the Slide deck : Kick Off Presentation 2018

Goals

  1.  The engagement of the community through artists, stakeholders and leaders in a creative process plan development.
  2.  An articulation of Sparks’ cultural identity based on the perceptions and aspirations of its people.
  3. An exploration of the community’s needs and identification of solutions.
  4.  A master plan that can serve as a framework for future development efforts.

Key Outcomes

  1. Creation of an arts overlay plan for downtown Sparks
  2. Community engagement training for artists
  3. Creative placemaking training for city staff and key volunteers
  4. Collection of public input through arts-based approaches
  5. Awards to artists to create and employ community engagements projects as part of the public input process

Timeline

August to December

  • Confirmed members of the Steering Committee
  • Finalized contracts with consultants
  • Nov 6: One-on-one meetings with Consultant and select City Staff/Elected Officials
  • Draft artist Request for Proposals (RFP) for community engagement
  • Creative Placemaking Training with City Staff and Steering Committee Meeting by Consultant
  • Finalize project logo, collateral, website

January to May

Summer 2019

  • Conduct at least 3 public engagement events facilitated by local artists (June-August)
  • Conduct an ongoing online engagement campaign

Fall 2019

  • Consultant develops downtown arts overlay plan.
  • Steering Committee and staff review, edit and finalize plan

January 2020

  • Plan is presented to City Council