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Maryland Parkway art project gets federal grant

A future Maryland Parkway facelift just hit the arts grants jackpot, receiving a $50,000 “Our Town” grant Wednesday from the National Endowment for the Arts to bankroll public art.

The Maryland Parkway project — which stretches from McCarran International Airport, UNLV and the Boulevard Mall to downtown Las Vegas — is one of 66 projects nationwide receiving “Our Town” grants totaling $5 million.

Clark County is the lead agency in a collaboration among the city of Las Vegas and UNLV, the Regional Transportation Commission and the Urban Land Institute that will assemble a team to research and develop a master plan for public art along the Maryland Parkway corridor.

The $50,000 NEA grant will be augmented by $10,000 contributions from Clark County, the city of Las Vegas and UNLV — along with in-kind contributions and in-kind support from ULI that bring the total to $101,370.

A Maryland Parkway Public Art Urban Design Plan is expected to be completed by August 2016 by a design team to architects, landscape architects and artists.

“This grant will allow for public art to become a component of Maryland Parkway as well thanks to all the public entities working together,” according to Mayor Carolyn Goodman.

The public art “will be implemented in conjunction with the redesign of Maryland Parkway for either light rail or rapid bus transit,” Commissioner Chris Giunchigliani stated in a news release. “Public art, when done right, will help create a more livable and vibrant Maryland Parkway with potentially more park-like spaces, plazas, more landscaping and the weaving of art into business and residential districts and into elements of infrastructure like pedestrian bridges and streetscapes. The possibilities are just really exciting and endless.”

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