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October 2013
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CityLink Seattle

Storefronts Seattle comes to the Waterfront!

We’re bringing Storefronts Seattle, the popular streetscape activation program that features an eclectic mix of artist-run pop-up galleries, boutiques, and museums to the Seattle waterfront beginning this winter. Temporary artists’ installations, shops, and other pop-ups will inhabit vacant storefront spaces along the Waterfront corridor.

The Office of Arts and Culture and the Department of Transportation is funding a three-year contract with Storefronts Seattle (a project of Shunpike) to mitigate some of the ruckus our various waterfront projects are going to cause over the next decade.

“Storefronts is an extremely effective tool to support transitional neighborhoods,” says Randy Engstrom, director of the Office of Arts and Culture. “It drives economic development in neighborhoods in need of retail activity, it injects art into people’s everyday walking experience, and it supports property owners and neighboring businesses while available spaces are between tenants.”

Anne Blackburn, manager of Storefronts Seattle for Shunpike, says that this contract “is one of the most exciting things that we’ve put together in this program to date. Seattle has the chance to reimagine a gigantic neighborhood, and for that change to last, literally, for generations. To include Storefronts in that initial push is a great opportunity for our local arts ecology, and we look forward to drawing the arts community and the development community closer together. We have a roster of incredible artists’ projects ready to dive into that neighborhood and foster creative vitality and engagement with our urban streetscapes.”

Expect the first projects to open this winter and spring. Ultimately Storefronts will be presenting up to seven concurrent projects in the neighborhood over the course of our contract.

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