For 25 years The Allegheny Regional Asset District, or RAD, has granted funding to hundreds of civic, cultural and recreational amenities throughout our region. To celebrate the impact of RAD and its milestone anniversary this year, the organization issued special RADical Impact Grants for “bold, forward-looking, creative projects that will have radical impact on the region as RAD looks to its next 25 years.”
On September 26, RAD announced that it was awarding $3.4 million to 12 grant proposals selected from 44 submissions. Riverlife was excited to learn that one of the funded proposals is “Artwalk on the Allegheny,” a project of The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust in which Riverlife is a collaborative partner.
“Artwalk on the Allegheny” is a sweeping vision to bring more people to the riverfront through immersive artwork and engaging programming along two miles of the Allegheny River between Point State Park and the Strip District. The RADical Impact Grant funding of $330,000 to the Trust will kickstart the first two projects of the Artwalk experience in 2020.
This isn’t the first time The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust and Riverlife have teamed up to bring art and engagement to the Allegheny River. Prior to the formation of Riverlife, the Trust built Allegheny Riverfront Park in the late 1990s, one of Pittsburgh’s first modern riverfront parks and trail connections. The project was a unique collaboration between artist Ann Hamilton and landscape architect Michael Van Valkenburgh and featured sculpture and nature-inspired design elements right next to the water’s edge.
That widely celebrated precedent inspired future collaboration with Riverlife on the city’s riverfronts. In 2015, the Trust and Riverlife launched the “#tbd” series of pop-up art under the Fort Duquesne Bridge, debuting during that summer’s Three Rivers Arts Festival. The following summers saw temporary installations of art, poetry, architectural design and photography in this traditionally underutilized section of the riverfront.
The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust and Riverlife believe strongly in the ability of public art to draw new audiences to Pittsburgh’s riverfronts. Thank you to the Allegheny Regional Asset District for supporting the Artwalk vision! Stay tuned for more details as the project takes shape in the coming months.