Four “Artful Bike Racks” have recently been installed in locations around Downtown Lynchburg, an area designated as the James River Arts & Cultural District. An installation and ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the project will take place on Thursday, September 24, 2015 at 1:30 p.m. at the 10th Street Entrance to City Hall.
The creation of creative, colorful bike racks was led by the James River Council for the Arts and Humanities (JRCAH) in order to contribute to the attractiveness of the downtown area and provide functional bicycle parking to serve residents living, working and visiting downtown businesses. The bike racks provide aesthetic points of interest, support increased bicycle u...se for short trips and liberate parking spaces for visitors from longer distances to access downtown businesses. The project complements the full range of beautification projects that have taken place in Downtown Lynchburg ad the City’s investment in trails and bike lanes.
More than 30 designs were submitted to the public Artful Bike Rack competition in Fall of 2014. By spring of 2015, the four winning designs selected had been created by Philip Gabathuler, Davy Hazelgrove, Matt Perkins and John Wilson.
One of the artful bike racks was fabricated at no cost by AREVA (Mt Athos division), while the remaining three were commissioned to local artist Paul Clements, who also produced the public LOVE statue downtown.
Bike racks are located at the Bank of the James plaza, the Community Market, City Hall and on the corner of 5th Street and Madison.
“The arts, including public art play a vital role in stimulating society and developing vital communities”, said Kim Soerensen, president of the James River Council. “They lift our quality of life, have a crucial impact on our economy, foster creativity, heighten our cultural intelligence and deepen our collective sense of humanity. We hope the Artful Bike Racks will stimulate our community in being active and riding bikes while delighting all with unique public art”.
“Public art gives a City personality. An arts-oriented, bike-friendly City creates a vibrant community with positive effects on business development and social and physical connectivity,” said Marjette Upshur, director of economic development for the City of Lynchburg. “The James River Arts & Culture District program is proud to support projects like this that advance both the arts and economic development.”
Development of the Artful Bike Rack project was made possible through numerous partnerships:
• Lynchburg’s Office of Economic Development facilitated a grant from the James River Arts & Cultural District Program.
• Lynchburg departments of Community Development and Public Works contributed staff time towards location and installation services
• AREVA and its staff, David Roberts and Scott Evans, provided material and fabrication services for one of the racks
• RIDE Solutions contributed funds for the fabrication of racks and provided staff project assistance
• The James River council for the Arts & Humanities contributed funds for the fabrication of racks and provided project leadership.
For more details about the event, visit the James River Council for the Arts & Humanities Facebook page.
About the James River Council for the Arts & Humanities
The mission of the JRCAH is to promote and facilitates public art projects and cultural experiences through the medium of art. Our goal is to enrich the lives of the citizens of our community, always free to the public.
Current and previous projects include:
• Permanent visual installations such as the LOVE sculpture and the Artful Bike Racks
• Temporary visual and multimedia installations such as Keys for the Hill City
• Upcoming photography installation in partnership with Miriam’s House “Through the eyes of the Homeless” to raise awareness and funds for the organization.
We are an all-volunteer organization, working on an entrepreneurial model to enrich the cultural lives of citizens; Our public projects are not limited to any creative medium or genre, and may include fundraising, design competitions, project management, promoting, documentation/permit guidance or other roles requested by project creators and/or artists