The Club Crossing project aimed to create a fun and welcoming street environment for elementary school students, families, and residents to cross to the Club Boulevard Elementary School, Northgate Park, and the Ellerbe Creek Trail. The project activated the intersection and travel lanes by adding artwork to the crosswalks in front of Club Boulevard Elementary, reducing speeding on West Club Boulevard, and increasing yielding to pedestrians crossing. Based on responses from 1,800+ residents through an online community vote held in January and February of 2021, Candy Carver was selected to paint her winning design out of five designs created by local and regional artists. Carver worked with community members and stakeholders to refine her crosswalk design, and together with 39 volunteers installed the mural over the course of two days. The mural, “Our Oasis,” depicts blue motifs and reminds residents of the nearby creek and surrounding natural environment with colorful fish guiding the way.
“By rooting the community at every stage of the project, the artist and volunteers were able to transform a normal intersection into a wayfinding landmark.”
Rebecca Brown, Cultural & Public Art Program Manager, City of Durham
Use the slider to see the transformation
Best Practice Highlight: Community Surveys
The City of Durham engaged community members throughout the design process by using various forms of surveys and community conversations. Through an initial survey, the City collected feedback from residents on usage and perception of the site, as well as what kinds of design interventions were desired. Five finalist artists were selected by a panel of community members and organizations and commissioned to create designs that responded to the needs and preferences of the community. This process culminated in a vote drawing in 1,826 responses, selecting Candy Carver’s crosswalk mural of colorful oceanic patterns and fish as the winner. Post installation, a school-day walking event was hosted for 160+ students to meet the artist and representatives from the East Coast Greenway, Ellerbe Creek Watershed Association, Bike Durham, and the Durham Park Foundation who discussed public art, street safety, nature, trail and park use, and connectivity throughout Northgate Park.
Durham seeks community input on future crosswalk art along West Club Boulevard (WTVD-TV (ABC), November 9, 2020)