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Published: Tuesday, 3/6/2007

Oregon pulls artwork plan for city-owned parcel

A proposed ordinance to seek artwork for a city-owned parcel was withdrawn last night because Oregon councilmen and members of the administration believed it was being introduced prematurely.

Councilman Sandy Bihn proposed the ordinance asking that the Arts Commission of Greater Toledo help facilitate a search for artwork to place on the city-owned property on the northwest corner of Navarre Avenue and Wheeling Street.

A good portion of council's 80-minute committee-of-the-whole meeting then was dedicated to discussing the project.

City officials have talked about showcasing the corner, possibly using flower beds, grassy areas, benches, and a defining piece of art or architecture or a landmark.

Mrs. Bihn said she would like to see a piece of artwork showcased there chosen by a design review board composed of members from the Oregon community and the arts commission.

But City Administrator Ken Filipiak said the administration was hoping to ask an architect to plan several layouts for the parcel to identify options before getting into detailed plans for a potential art piece.

"We don't want to put the cart before the horse," he said.

Several councilmen also expressed reservations regarding the type of art that might be showcased on the property.

"It is much easier for me to imagine that corner being more conducive to architectural art, rather than fine art, with the emphasis on mounding and flowers," Councilman Jerry Peach said.

Because the ordinance did not have a majority of council's support last night, Mrs. Bihn said she'd hold onto it for possible consideration at a future meeting.



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