by Jen Graves
on Mon, Jan 21, 2013 at 12:18 PM
ArtPlace is a collaborative group of foundations, government art agencies (including the National Endowment for the Arts), and banks. It gives grants and ranks things. Its latest ranking: the top 12 ArtPlaces in the country's leading cities, including Seattle's Pike/Pine corridor, which will be feted by ArtPlace and Mayor McGinn at Velocity Dance this coming Friday morning at a press event.
What makes a regular place an ArtPlace with two capital letterses?
Four indicators measure ingredients of vibrancy: the number of retail and service businesses; the percentage of independent businesses; the neighborhood’s Walk Score; and the percentage of workers in creative occupations living in the neighborhood. Two arts-related indicators were also used: the number of arts-related non-profits and the number of arts-related businesses. Finally, neighborhood scores were normalized for family income so that neighborhoods with the highest concentration of income did not skew the results.
I regret the way that Capitol Hill continues to be whittled away bit by bit... In the last year, I have watched my favorite places go away and cease to exist. From the Faire Gallery cafe, the Living Room bar, the impending move of Bauhaus—it just seems as if my home is intent on becoming something quite different than the amazing petri dish for creativity, the odd and the amazing, and is losing the grunge that has made it such a wonderful place to be. And, while I know that change is inevitable, I hope if this continues, that moves are made to ensure that Seattle protects the venues of weirdness and creativity that are attempting to endure against all odds. I hope no one ever decides to do away with the Mercury or Neighbours and the tons of little theaters, working spaces, bars, and restaurants that bring life and joy to the area. So I guess while 2012 saw the closure of some of my favorite places on "the hill," at least after this I won't have to regret never having said anything about it.
He might consider attending Friday's event and asking a few questions.