Category Archives: Urban Vitality
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE February 6, 2014
Image downloads: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/dwslaljeoroe9wx/d94YSk1KPh
Art Detour 26 is an All Access Pass
to More than 100 Downtown Art Venues
‘Living in Color’
Mayor Greg Stanton, Downtown Phoenix Inc. and Artlink Inc. Host
‘Art d’Core Gala’ Celebrating a ‘Downtown for Everyone’
PHOENIX –The 26th Annual Art Detour, March 8-9, 2014, will be an exceptional celebration of artists and their important contribution to the vibrancy of downtown Phoenix.
More than 100 spaces, including working artist studios, unique art spaces, galleries, cultural venues, restaurants and retailers will open their doors to make this the best two-day, all-access pass to the downtown arts scene in Detour’s 26-year history. [See the full list of participants: http://artlinkphoenix.com/articipants/participating-venues/%5D
“Detour-ists” are invited to visit artists’ private working studios not typically open for viewing, explore Pop-Up Gallery exhibits exclusively planned for Art Detour, and to discover the colorful mural scene on walls, buildings and fences throughout downtown.
A free double-decker London bus will circulate, making stops at neighborhood “park-and-ride hubs” in Roosevelt Row, Grand Avenue, CityScape, Arizona Center, and more, providing the public with a unique opportunity to explore Phoenix’s art scene in a fun, festival environment. The event coincides with First Friday, March 7, 2014, resulting in a weekend chock-full of arts-related experiences, exhibitions and activities.
Celebrate at the Art d’Core Gala March 1, 2014
Join the Office of the Mayor, Downtown Phoenix, Inc., Artlink and other community partners on Saturday, March 1, 2014, at the Artd’CoreGala, a celebration of the significant role the arts have played in invigorating and adding color to our downtown.
Mayor Greg Stanton will be the featured speaker of the festive event at Crescent Ballroom, toasting business leaders, small business entrepreneurs, neighborhood groups, and the flourishing arts community in an expression of shared pride in Phoenix.
“It took everyone, including the City, business, neighborhood groups, entrepreneurs and artists to bring our city this far,” said Mayor Greg Stanton. “We will continue working together to add the textures, flavors, and colors that strengthen our vibrant downtown and showcase this city we love. We are building a downtown that belongs to everyone.”
This free, “fun formal” affair will feature live music and dancing; fabulous food and drink; art installations featuring premiere local artists; and an eye-popping virtual tour of downtown art spaces. Guests are encouraged to dress colorfully with creative formal attire.
“Downtown artists and arts entrepreneurs are key players in the ongoing development of our vibrant downtown core,” said David Krietor, CEO of Downtown Phoenix Inc. “The Art d’Core Gala is a party where everyone can come together to celebrate the positive impact the arts have had in our remarkable city.”
WHEN: Saturday, March 1, 2014, 6:00 p.m.
WHERE: Crescent Ballroom, 308 N. 2nd Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85003
TICKETS: There is no charge for this event, however, please RSVP to Art d’Core Gala
ATTIRE: Dress colorfully! Creative formal attire encouraged.
HOSTED BY: The Office of the Mayor, Downtown Phoenix Inc. and Artlink Inc.
Art Detour 26 Schedule of Events:
3/1 – Art d’Core Gala at Crescent Ballroom – A festive, free, art-full celebration of our downtown hosted by Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton, Downtown Phoenix, Inc. and benefiting Artlink Inc.
3/7 – Pre-Detour First Friday. March First Friday is one of the most popular of the year.
3/8-9 – Art Detour 26. A free, two-day immersive arts experience, featuring over 100 designated venues and free, circulating trolleys to help visitors enjoy self-guided studio, art space and gallery tours.
This free weekend event also offers programming for all ages, including family-friendly “Kids’ Detour” activities at participating venues.
“Artlink is excited to have partners like CityScape, Downtown Phoenix Inc., Downtown Phoenix Partnership and Phoenix Community Alliance who are helping connect Artlink to the broader downtown community,” said Catrina Kahler, President of Artlink’s Board of Directors.
Artlink, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to linking artists, business and the public to better understand, appreciate and support a thriving arts community in downtown Phoenix. Artlink supports a variety of community-based art events including the First Fridays Art Walk, the country’s largest self-guided gallery tour; guided Collectors Tours; an annual Juried Exhibition; and the annual Art Detour self-guided tour, featuring open studios, pop-up galleries, family-friendly art experiences and more. Artlink Inc. is supported by: Downtown Phoenix Inc., Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture, Phoenix Art Museum, CityScape, Dunn Transportation, The Torosian Foundation, Arizona Commission on the Arts, Phoenix Community Alliance, Phoenix Center for the Arts, Snell & Wilmer, Downtown Voices Coalition, Grand Avenue Members Association, Roosevelt Row CDC, Urban Affair, 6th Ave. Gallery and Invexi Web Development.
About Downtown Phoenix Inc.
Downtown Phoenix, Inc., is a community development group created to organize and galvanize Downtown Phoenix. DPI coordinates activities between the Downtown Phoenix Partnership and Phoenix Community Alliance while providing advocacy and support for the businesses, neighborhoods and community partners in greater Downtown Phoenix.
For more information, visit artlinkphoenix.com.
On November 7, 2013, the Downtown Voices Coalition submitted the following “op-ed” in response to the Arizona Republic’s year-end series, “The New Economy.” In reviewing the “op-ed” 30 days later, the only thing that has changed is Phoenix’s bond rating, “downgraded from AAA to AA+. Changes to Standard and Poor’s criteria mean ratings are now largely based on local economic conditions. Phoenix property values dropped significantly during the Great Recession affecting the rating. We welcome your comments.
The Arizona Republic’s editorial board recently heralded the launch of a series of articles titled “The New Arizona.” Noting that this is a “sink-or swim” moment for the state, the paper announced, “Now is the time to fire up strategic plans for a more prosperous Arizona.” While we applaud the thought behind this series, we were disappointed that the paper failed to recognize the most important drivers of modern Arizona’s economy: Our cities.
As many economists have begun to acknowledge, the 21st Century is poised to become the Century of the City. Therefore, any series that attempts to present a strategic plan to “fire up” the Arizona economy should focus primarily on our urban centers and what is being done there to stimulate the economy and help us compete in the global marketplace.
If the Republic were to focus on this state’s predominant urban center, Phoenix, it would find much to celebrate. Downtown Phoenix, in particular, is enjoying a resurgence that is outpacing that of other parts of the state and the western U.S. Real estate values are rising, and demand is high; businesses are opening or expanding; light rail ridership continues to grow; and, most important, there is an exciting “buzz’’ about downtown that is attracting both local and national attention.
Much of this excitement about downtown Phoenix can be attributed to the work of activists and residents who, over time, have developed successful working relationships with elected officials and city staff, and have begun to play a more meaningful role in the development of the urban core. For example, the Mayor has formed Downtown Phoenix, Inc. (on whose board I sit), which gives community and neighborhood activists in and around our downtown “a seat at the table” that was once reserved exclusively for large business interests. Even at a fine-grain level, residents have exercised more influence on city development, as evidenced by the “Greening of Grand Avenue,” which has dramatically altered the streetscape west of the business core, as well as much needed neighborhood streetscape improvements along Fifth Street from the Phoenix Biomedical Campus to the Roosevelt Arts District.
Just a few years ago, such influence would have been unthinkable. However, today, because of the city’s more open policy and the efforts of the Mayor and Council members, residents are more optimistic about their ability to shape the future of downtown Phoenix, and are, in turn,more bullish about the city’s economic recovery.
The resurgence of central Phoenix bodes well for the rest of Arizona. The development of entrepreneurial incubators such as SEED SPOT and CO+HOOTS and the expansion of the Biomedical Campus point to the development of a “new economy” that should be able to weather the market far better than the traditional “growth-for growth’s sake” model that has dominated the Arizona economy for the past 50 years. Moreover, policies developed in cities like Phoenix can serve as models for other areas of the state. This trend was evident when Phoenix approved the Access to Care Ordinance, expected to bring in more than $200 million in federal funding to support uncompensated health care for Phoenix residents over the life of the program. After Phoenix implemented this program, the State Legislature followed the city’s lead and enacted a similar measure to provide coverage throughout the state.
The Republic should be examining successful programs such as these, as it has in the past with editorials lauding adaptive reuse and public art, and proposing new ideas for accelerating economic development in urban areas. Unfortunately, the media’s fixation on the issue of employee compensation to the exclusion of almost everything else doesn’t help tell our broader story. By confining their analysis to this one aspect of the city’s operations, the Republic has created the impression Phoenix’s growth is threatened as a result of its pension and other compensation obligations.
Nothing could be farther from the truth. Phoenix retains its AAA Bond rating and is still considered one of the best-managed cities in the world. Moreover, the Mayor and some enlightened council members passed reasonable measures to rein in pension costs (measures that, by the way, are supported by the Phoenix Chamber of Commerce). Others continues to insist, however, that the city pursue goals of “questionable legality” in restricting pensions that would undermine the city’s commitment to standards of fundamental fairness and would inevitably lead to protracted and costly litigation.
As we sit at the edge of an economic recovery, it is time for us to move on. We need to celebrate the increasing diversity of Phoenix’s economy and focus on how we can improve upon and replicate the city’s successes. Of course, we need to address problems when they arise, but we should not become so intransigent and polemical in our response to these issues that we threaten to derail our entire economy. Above all, we need to acknowledge that our fortunes, and those of Arizona, will depend in large part on the support we give our cities. It is only through the success of our cities that can we develop a more prosperous Arizona.
Very truly yours,
Chair, Downtown Voices Coalition