The Petaluma Public Art Committee (PPAC) expressed interest investing in our local parks and playgrounds. The Parks and Recreation department is currently launching the Kenilworth Revitalization project (click here to learn more: https://cityofpetaluma.org/kenilworthpark/) that invests Measure M and Proposition 68 funds to renovate the entire Kenilworth Park site. As a tandem effort, the PPAC has begun to outline a separate but linked project to create the park's playground using the City's Public Art Fund, which is referred to as the Kenilworth Playground Public Art project and detailed on this page. The PPAC worked with the community to find the aspirations of the playground and park, then casted a Call for Artists via a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) to work with a designer or design firm to take the public's feedback and help imagine a functional playground-artwork. The outcome of the RFQ is a contract award for an artist, designer, or creative team to work with the City and others for the overall design of Kenilworth Park with particular focus to the public art-playground area(s), structure(s), and other artistic and creative elements added to the park.
In February 2022, the PPAC started a dialogue with staff about how the City’s public art program could collaborate with other organizations and City departments to create higher impact with public art. PPAC members engaged with the community outside of the Public Art Committee activities and meetings, including outreach to other Commissions, Committees, and Boards, to find external opportunities to integrate Public Art goals and opportunities into projects under construction or in planning stages. This outreach spurred conversation with the Petaluma Fire Department about creating murals for the upcoming fire station renovations and working with the City’s Transit department to explore strategies to highlight public transit and other alternative methods to transportation using public art. Additionally, the Committee and staff clarified an opportunity to create a new playground at the Kenilworth Park as part of a larger renovation of the site led primarily by the Parks and Recreation Department and Recreation, Music, & Parks Commission.
At the February 24, 2022 PPAC meeting, the Committee requested that staff add the Kenilworth Playground Public Art item to the next meeting agenda as a brainstorming session and indicated that the Committee would send staff ideas and concepts of other ‘playground-meets-public-art’ examples for presentation at the following meeting. On March 24, 2022, staff presented the submitted examples to facilitate brainstorming on the topic of creating a playground public artwork at the Kenilworth Park site.
At the April 2022 PPAC meeting, the Committee requested that staff continue to collaborate with the Parks and Recreation Department about partnership opportunities and requested status updates at subsequent PPAC meetings. After several conversations with Parks Department staff alongside supplemental research of similar projects, staff generated a concept project concept for the Kenilworth Playground Public Art opportunity for the Committee’s consideration.
The initial draft of the project concept was presented at the July 2022 PPAC meeting as a discussion item at which time the Committee provided feedback on the initial draft. In August 2022, PPAC approved $5,000 in spending for the first phase of "exploration and discovery" to conduct community engagement in collaboration with the Parks and Recreation department and Communication team.
From January to March 2023, staff and the PPAC launched a community engagement survey aimed to hear feedback from community members about how public art should be integrated into the park and how public art's role can be used to provide play structures, play spaces, and creative inspiration to everyone at Kenilworth Park. The results of this survey, which were included as Appendix A - Community Engagement Survey Feedback to the RFQ document and required to be read by each applicant, were directly involved in creating the project goals and vision for the Playground Project. These goals were additionally used to select the awarded contract to one (1) artist, designer, or creative team to design the project as described in the RFQ opportunity.
The Kenilworth Playground Public Art RFQ was approved by the PPAC at their regular April 24, 2023 public meeting, which opened the application period for RFQ submissions on May 1, 2023 and remained open until June 9, 2023. During this time, twenty-four (24) eligible applications were received by the City and were reviewed and scored by the PPAC. At the June 22, 2023 regular PPAC meeting, staff displayed the results from this scoring with the purpose of having the Committee select one (1) applicant to award the contract award to. At the same June public meeting, the Committee nominated Oleg Lobykin, a qualified artist and designer from East Palo Alto, for the project's contract award.
The City and MIG launched a new community survey to showcase the first draft design of the new Kenilworth Park site and spaces. This survey is online and open until November 30th. Please follow the link below to take this community survey.
Kenilworth Park Site Design Community Survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/HFV9KFC?fbclid=IwAR2SxqnoAeKOthanoOCncWMorY5K9wxVnsCaT4psvNQEUe5NpOwRD5No_CI
The City's team, including MIG as the Kenilworth Revitalization project designers and in collaboration with Lobykin, are presenting a site plan for feedback from the Recreation, Music, and Parks Commission in a joint session with the Public Art Committee on Wednesday, November 15th 2023. Please go to https://cityofpetaluma.org/meetings/ to learn more about attending and/or participating at this public meeting.
Public Meetings and Hearings
- Recreation, Music, and Parks Commission Joint Session with Public Art Committee - 11/15/23
- Public Art Committee - 6/22/23
- Public Art Committee - 4/27/23
- Public Art Committee - 3/23/23
- Public Art Committee - 2/23/23
- Public Art Committee - 1/26/23
- Public Art Committee - 8/25/22
- Public Art Committee - 7/28/22
- Public Art Committee - 3/24/22