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The City of Colorado Springs has been approved for a $40,000 Grants for Arts Projects award from the National Endowment for the Arts to support a future public art project in Panorama Park. This is one of 16 projects in Colorado selected for a grant during the first round of awards given nationwide in 2021.

The goal of the art project is to bring innovative, original artwork that reflects the community’s identity into the park’s new design. Panorama Park, a 13.5-acre neighborhood park located in southeast Colorado Springs, is set to receive the largest neighborhood park renovation in city history. Construction on the park is expected to begin in spring 2021.  

“The Grants for Arts Projects is a highly competitive, prestigious national award, and we are deeply honored to receive these funds for Panorama Park,” said Karen Palus, Colorado Springs parks, recreation and cultural services director. “Residents in the southeast have rallied around the redevelopment of Panorama, and our shared vision is to create an innovative structure that educates, engages and inspires park visitors by reflecting the rich diversity of the community. This is a very special opportunity because it will bring the first city-owned public art installation to the southeast.” 

Next steps in the realization of the new artwork will begin with the convening of an expert panel later this month that will create a “call for artists” process and develop a timeline and criteria for selection. A short list of finalists will then be selected by a community committee that includes representatives from neighborhood associations, local schools and the City. Once the artist is selected, a participatory design process will engage community members in all aspects of the creative process. 

The addition of an art component in Panorama’s renovation reflects a recommendation from the recently adopted Public Art master plan. Part of its vision is to integrate public art into all City initiatives, developments and planning projects as standard practice.

The park renovation aims to provide a safe, accessible, quality community destination park within a 10-minute walk for many southeast residents, add new features based upon community needs, replace aging equipment, and re-envision the park to address currently limited opportunities for play and hazardous conditions. For more information about the project, including the work of partners like The Trust for Public Land, visit Panorama Park project webpage.  

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