Tuesday is going to be a big night in Richmond.  For almost 30 years, there has been discussion about adopting a Percent for Art Ordinance.  San Francisco, Oakland, Berkeley, El Cerrito, San Jose, San Mateo, Walnut Creek, Alameda, Emeryville, Palo Alto, Brisbane, Santa Rosa, Napa, Petaluma, and Dublin already have programs.  The time is now.  Please attend and share your support at the December 20th City Council meeting!

Old Buddy (For Rosko), 1993-95, painted steel

So what is the Percent for Art Ordinance?  It is a contribution of 1% for Public Art on private development projects of $500,000 or more.  The ordinance allows for a commission of an onsite artwork or contribute to an in lieu fund.  Projects of multi-family residential of 10+ units, commercial or industrial developments are eligible.

Richmond proud.

So how would Richmond benefit?

  1. Richmond becomes a competitive location for business and tourism.
  2. Businesses stand out and become easily identifiable.
  3. Honors local tradition and communities.
  4. Public Art enhances our urban environment.
  5. Improves the quality of life for residents and visitors.
  6. Attracts new business and economic growth.

Bottom line: investment attracts investment.


Let’s not forget about developers!  Public Art attracts buyers and tenants while partnering with the community.  It brands buildings and projects by creating identity.  In addition, creates publicity and social media interest.  But most importantly, strengthens relationships with residents and visitors.

Shadow exercise for public art gate design research.
Design for public art fence.


Susan O'Malley, San Pablo Ave., Berkeley, California, USA.
Susan O’Malley, San Pablo Ave., Berkeley, California, USA.

Public Art takes many diverse shapes and forms.  It can be murals, sculptures, sidewalk pavers, entryways, gates, outdoor seating, architectural details, imaginative lighting, and so much more.  Envision the possibilities that can be tailored to enhance unique spaces.

Mike Godell, Stevens Point Sculpture Park.
Mike Godell, Stevens Point Sculpture Park.

Richmond must not cut itself short.  Our community has so much to offer.  We are diverse and public art reflects this uniqueness.  Arts are the standard that judge the quality and vitality of a community.

We can do this and providing support is easy!  A quick email sharing what a Percent for Art Ordinance means to you to the Mayor and City Councilmembers is a positive start.

Email info:


Please come to the City Council meeting on Tuesday December 20th at 6:30 pm at 440 Civic Center Plaza.  Feel free to show or talk in support for the Percent for Art Ordinance.  From the City of Richmond website: “PUBLIC COMMENT ON AGENDA ITEMS: Anyone who desires to address the City Council on items appearing on the agenda must complete and file a pink speaker’s card with the City Clerk Prior to the City Council’s consideration of the item.  Once the City Clerk has announced the item, no person shall be permitted to speak on the item other than those persons who have submitted their names to the City Clerk.  Your name will be called when the item is announced for discussion.  Each speaker will be allowed TWO (2) MINUTES to address the City Council on NON-PUBLIC HEARING items listed on the agenda.”


We can do this Richmond!

The links:










One thought on “TUESDAY

  1. IMPORTANT! The Percent for Art in Private Development Ordinance presentation on Tuesday 12/20 at the Richmond City Council has been postponed due to the agenda being packed. As a result, it will be rescheduled to a different date. Please stay tuned!

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