Breaking Down … Creative Placemaking

Grounding Vacant Property Revitalization in Arts and Culture


For many communities, an examination of shared history is not easy. Community development in the United States is interwoven with racist and unjust policies that benefited some communities at the expense of others. When done equitably, creative placemaking can be one way for communities to leverage creative expression to reshape a community, reverse the systemic silencing of residents and spark interest in revitalizing vacant property.

Creative placemaking is the practice of enhancing a neighborhood’s quality of life through arts, culture, and intentional community development. This practice can take varying forms including, but not limited to, temporary visual art installations, performance events, and developing permanent, brick-and-mortar spaces. It is about more than just creating artistic attractions, though. Creative placemaking also connects to the resources of a community’s own arts, culture, and identity, and in doing so can help communities understand its past, examine its history, and together look ahead toward a more just and inclusive future.

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of creative placemaking projects activate underutilized space

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