Marlene Feist, Utilities Communications Manager, No Phone Number Available
Friday, October 16, 2015 at 2:33 p.m.
A set of seven steel animal figures adorned with colorful enamel pieces now roam along the grassy area on Desmet in the Chief Garry Park Neighborhood, just north of the City of Spokane's new Spokane Central Service Center.
A dedication ceremony on Oct. 15 celebrated the creation of the piece, called “Menagerie,” which was conceived and built by Coeur d'Alene artists Allen and Mary Dee Dodge. Spokane Arts managed the art selection process for the City.
Neighbors report that area kids already have discovered the pieces, climbing on them and playing tag around the legs of the blocky animals. The public art piece was commissioned as part of the City's Service Center project. A City ordinance requires that 1 percent of the cost of such projects be invested in public art.
“I love that the art isn't on the building or behind the fence, that it's here for the neighborhood to enjoy,” Council Member Amber Waldref said at the ceremony. She thanked neighborhood leaders, Colleen Gardner, Cathy Gunderson, and Jim Santorsola, for their help on the art project.
Ken Gimpel, the City's Assistant Utilities Division Director, thanked the artists for creating a piece that adds to the neighborhood and adds visual appeal to the Service Center.
The Service Center is a combined Solid Waste Collection and Fleet Maintenance Facility. Among other things, the new facility will enable the City to convert its solid waste fleet to compressed natural gas (CNG) from diesel fuel, a move that's both environmentally and financially responsible. The City already has received its first CNG trucks and has put a couple into service.
The two-story, 57,500-square-foot center opened in August. The $16.5 million facility is located on the south side of a 32-acre, City-owned site that's west of Nelson and north of Broadway near several other City facilities.