Urban Design Coffee Klatch, May 25

What: Urban Design & Public Art Coffee Klatch
When: May 25 10a.m.-11a.m.
Where: Amocat Café, 625 St. Helens Avenue, Tacoma

Making history: the Prairie Line Trail extends from Dock Street to South 25th St.

The Prairie Line Trail, a $5.83 million rails-to-trails project to link major downtown Tacoma destinations via a pedestrian and bicycle path, is now underway. The design team chosen to create a public art plan for the project, Todd Bressi and Thoughtbarn, will host an open discussion of the trail’s art component on Wednesday, May 25, at the Amocat Café.

The half-mile, two-acre Prairie Line Trail is a historic rail corridor that runs through several landmark areas: the University of Washington-Tacoma campus, the historic Brewery District, the Museum District and the Thea Foss Waterway. The project’s $30,000 public art planning budget is partially funded by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). “The Prairie Line Trail will be a vital component to our culturally vibrant downtown. The NEA’s support will insure that public art plays an instrumental role in defining the trail’s identity,” says Amy McBride, City of Tacoma Arts Administrator. Todd Bressi and Thoughtbarn (the duo of Lucy Begg and Robert Gay) were selected for the public art commission through a national competition. Please join us in welcoming these innovative designers to Tacoma!
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Thoughtbarn's CO2LED project (Arlington, VA) with Jack Sanders and Butch Anthony

Todd Bressi is an award-winning Urban Designer and Planner who brings a foundation of research-based design and a public participation approach to the Prairie Line Trail project. He edited the outstanding design journal, Places, for a decade and teaches planning and design courses at the University of Pennsylvania. His work has won national awards and been published in numerous professional magazines. Bressi received a B.A. in Urban Studies from Columbia and a Master of City Planning from UC Berkeley. www.artfulplaces.com

Thoughtbarn, the Austin-based collaborative team of Lucy Begg and Robert Gay, is a multidisciplinary studio that champions the artful design of everyday spaces through buildings, urban strategies, public art installations, and furniture.  Some projects of note include a solar-powered way-finding system for the Lance Armstrong bikeway, and a house which can be fully recycled.  Invention, collaboration, and resourcefulness are at the core of their practice. www.thoughtbarn.us

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