An arts, culture, and creative placemaking plan for Key West’s newest park
Since 2009, the City of Key West and its citizens have made a historic investment of time and money into Truman Waterfront Park, a former Naval station in the heart of Historic Old Town. Funded by a National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Our Town grant, the Arts & Culture Master Plan intends to capitalize on this investment with a vital public space that reflects its exceptional historic and community context.
CivicMoxie was selected to lead this six-month planning effort that looked at existing arts and cultural organizations and events in the city and assessed the needs and desires of residents, visitors, and organizations as related to Truman Waterfront Park. The project team worked with local partners to assess existing conditions, seek public input, and identify priorities and collaborators to ensure the park serves as a true community anchor that integrates public art, local culture, ecological principles, and the community. While the location of Truman Waterfront Park is not without its challenges, the opportunity to create a cohesiveness on site that brings all the neighboring residents and cultural institutions together is clear.
It is important to note however, that this plan is about much more than public art in the park. Today’s urban parks act as neighborhood gathering places, showcases for community activities, world class destinations, and economic development engines. The current state of innovative park planning in this country and the world is to plan, program, and manage parks within the larger social, physical, and economic systems of the cities in which they are located. Because of this, the plan addresses issues of park integration into the surrounding neighborhoods, highlights opportunities for economic development, and seeks to strengthen Key West’s Historic Old Town community through public art and creative placemaking. The potential of Truman Waterfront Park is exciting and this plan presents a path forward to ensure that it will flourish into the future as a common ground where everyone in Key West comes together.
Arts and culture, community engagement, community revitalization, placemaking, waterfront / resiliency