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October 8, 2013 > AC Transit seeks artists

AC Transit seeks artists

Submitted By Clarence Johnson

AC Transit has released two Requests for Qualifications (RFQs) for artists and artisans to work on its Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system, slated to start construction in 2014. The 34 stations along the 9.5-mile route stretching from Downtown Oakland to San Leandro BART will receive customized artistic treatments, created by one to three lead artists working with other artists or artisans drawn from a pre-qualified pool. The lead artists and pre-qualified artists and artisans will be chosen based on responses to the RFQs, which are due November 13, 2013, at 2 p.m. PST.

The artistic enhancement of these heavily used, outdoor bus stations will likely be led by artists who are experienced in large-scale, high-performance installations. AC Transit is committed to building this capacity among emerging artists, and so has split the procurement in two, also creating the pre-qualified pool of artists and artisans. Participating in the construction of the BRT will allow these artists and artisans to gain experience that can help them further their careers and compete in the future for large-scale projects.

Examples of artistic enhancement of the bus stations may include panels integrated with railings along the sloped paths to the raised platforms, and customization of the upper windscreen panel of the shelter structure. Because each of the 34 stations will receive artistic treatments, stations may reflect the surrounding neighborhoods, respecting the diversity of the route, most of which runs along International Boulevard and E 14th St. Artists will be selected by a panel made up of project and design professionals, representatives from the partner agencies, arts professionals, and community members. After selection, the artists will meet with the communities along the route to inform their work.

AC Transit has chosen an artistic theme for the overall route: Honor the Past and Celebrate the Future. The chosen artists will create their works based on their interpretation of the theme as well as input from the community. Either one artist for the entire corridor or one for each of three station groupings will be selected. The pre-qualified pool of artists and artisans will include all applicants who demonstrate the necessary qualifications. The RFQs can be found at and submissions are due November 13, 2013 at 2:00 pm PST.

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