Phoenix’s small arts groups make First Friday authentic

Four years ago, Downtown Voices Coalition issued its report, “Downtown Voices: Creating a Sustainable Downtown.”  In the slideshow above, in recognition of First Friday this coming Friday, we highlight arts-oriented businesses and organizations along Roosevelt Row, Grand Avenue, and the Warehouse District.  The report’s section on Arts and Culture recommended the following:

  • The City should create a task force, including downtown artists, to research opportunities and ways to preserve and nurture existing arts uses downtown and explore realistic approaches to funding sources, zoning issues, building codes, live/work space, etc. and their implementation.   STATUS: Significant progress with the creation of the Downtown Artists Issues Task Force (2005); initiation of the Artists Storefront Program; creation of the Arts, Culture, and Small Business Overlay; and current work of another task force focused on adaptive reuse. 
  • The arts need to be recognized and respected as the small businesses they are, and assisted in accessing services available to small businesses, or have programs tailored specifically to their needs.  STATUS: Work in progress as groups like Local First Arizona, RadiatePhoenix, Phoenix Downtown Market, Downtown Voices Coalition, Roosevelt Row, Grand Avenue Merchants Association, and SoDo continue to state the case for local authenticity.
  • The City should take advantage of piggyback marketing opportunities, acknowledging the opportunities associated with monthly First Fridays and annual Art Detour.  STATUS: Work in progress as numerous parties, including the City of Phoenix, Downtown Phoenix Partnership, Maricopa Partnership for Arts and Culture, and ASU Downtown, work to reinvigorate marketing of downtown Phoenix.

If you know of other positive things going on, please let us know.

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