May 20, 2014 7:57 pm

City committee approves spending cap on public art projects

CALGARY- A city committee has approved changes to a controversial public arts policy, that saw one per cent of funding for public projects earmarked for accompanying art.

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Calls for change originally came up after the Travelling Light was unveiled, as many people thought it was both overpriced and an eyesore. However, Mayor Naheed Nenshi said people shouldn’t have judged the policy solely based on that one sculpture.

“Keep in mind that you can talk about the blue circle all you want, but that’s the only piece of public art that people ever criticized,” Nenshi said. “There are hundreds and hundreds of pieces of public art that people really like.”

On Tuesday, the committee passed a new policy that will see money spent on art capped at $4 million per project. They also added two people to the art jury, bringing the total to seven members.

The new plan will go before city council next Monday.

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