In order to facilitate local determination of appropriate transit-related art undertakings, FTA has established broad, flexible guidelines for including art in FTA funded projects. In general, design activities and art visible to the public in areas of t ransit projects (facilities and vehicles) are an eligible cost under FTA’s planning and capital grant programs. Art products and components, in their physical and temporal manifestations (as in the case of incorporating designated performance areas for music and theatrical works into the design of a facility) and the la bor and materials to develop and implement art, are eligible capital costs. Art and design that promotes specific private or corporate business interests is ineligible for FTA funding.
A few eligible activities include, but are not limited to, the following:
Photo: Master plan for the Ninth Street Pedestrian Mall in Miami, FL.
Passenger, Maintenance and Administrative Facilities. As the entry points for customers into a transit system, passenger facilities provide an ideal setting to incorporate good art and design into public transportation projects. Art and design can blend passenger facilities and the transit system into the fabric of the surrounding community. Passenger facilities include stations, terminals, intermodal facilities, bus shelters, park-and-ride lots, and other associated facilities that provide bicycle and pedestrian access to the transit system. These facilities can also serve as showcases for regional and other exhibits, and provide display cases for posters or announcements of community and other local events, thereby increasing their identity as important public facilities. Transit agencies may also want to consider incorporating art into maintenance and administrative facilities to improve the aesthetic qualities of these buildings for agency staff and the visiting public.
Vehicles. Public transportation vehicles can be made more attractive through distinctive interior and exterior design and graphics employed in a cost-effective manner by design professionals and artists.
Gant recipients should contact their FTA Regional Office to receive verification on whether an aspect of a particular art or design activity is eligible for FTA support.
The following criteria should be considered when art is commissioned or acquired in connection with FTA assisted transit projects, or when artists are involved in planning and design of art in transit projects, or both:
The most recent version of FTA Circular 4220, “Third Party Contracting Guidance,” recommends procedures for selecting architects for transit projects but does not specifically address the selection of artists. Grant recipients who are considering using Federal funds to support art and design should consult this Circular to ensure procurement procedures are properly adhered to.