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Request for Qualifications: Placemaking Sculpture

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Entry Deadline: 12/1/19
Application Closed
Work Sample Requirements
Images | Minimum:Min. 6, Maximum:Max. 10
Video | Minimum:Min. 0, Maximum:Max. 1
Total Samples | Minimum:Min. 6, Maximum:Max. 11
Call Type: Public Art
Eligibility: Regional
State: Oregon

TriMet is seeking a professional artist/artist team to create a permanent, site-specific sculpture to be sited at the Gresham Central Transit Center in Gresham, Oregon as part of the MAX Blue Line Station Rehabilitation Project. The opportunity also includes a schematic design for the transit center plaza. The budget for the commission is $110,000. The deadline for applications is Sunday, December 1, 2019.


TriMet Public Art Program
TriMet’s Public Art Program promotes transit use as well as community cohesion and pride by integrating artwork into the public transit system that contributes to artistic and cultural expression in the region.

Blue Line Station Rehabilitation Project (BLSR)
In 2015, TriMet began making improvements to the MAX stations along the Eastside MAX Blue Line. Fourteen stations between Hollywood/NE 42nd Ave Transit Center and Cleveland Ave MAX Station in Gresham are being renovated under this multi-year program. To date, the renovation of three stations is complete with construction on the MAX station at the Gresham Central Transit Center currently scheduled for early 2021.

Note: The Division Transit Project (DTP), TriMet’s first enhanced bus service project connecting Gresham to downtown Portland, will also be making improvements at the Gresham Central Transit Center. Construction is scheduled to begin in late 2019 with new service starting in 2022.

Gresham Central Transit Center
Gresham Central Transit Center (GCTC) is the primary transportation hub in downtown Gresham. The transit center, located four blocks (0.3 miles) northeast of Historical Downtown Gresham serves eight TriMet bus lines, the MAX Blue Line, a Bike & Ride, and a 540-space Park & Ride, in addition to the Sandy Area Metro bus line. Residential neighborhoods and light industrial businesses surround the transit center, in addition to the Gresham Senior Center and the East County Health Center. Gresham High School is a few blocks northwest of the GCTC.


Placemaking Sculpture
The site for the sculpture is near the corner of NE Hood Ave and NE 8th Ave, where the sculpture can be experienced from multiple transit modes, directions and points of view. Sited at the far west end of the westbound MAX platform, the future sculpture presents an opportunity to help redefine the character of the area, signal an entrance to the Gresham Central TC, and visually unify the various waiting areas. Applicants are strongly encouraged to visit the site before applying.

Though the sculpture must be designed to stand alone, this commission includes the opportunity to create a schematic design for the adjacent triangular-shaped plaza at the GCTC, which could include a series of related sculptures. This design would be conceptual in nature for improvements that are currently unfunded.

Artwork Goals
TriMet and the City of Gresham envision this project as a catalyst for future enhancements at the Gresham Central Transit Center and surrounding area. As a placemaking sculpture, a process of civic engagement that builds connection within the community and to the site should be inherent in the design of the artwork. However, the community is not required to participate in the fabrication of the artwork. The sculpture itself should reflect a contemporary, forward thinking aesthetic. Attention should be given to how the sculpture relates to nearby artwork, especially Fine Tuned Tulle by Seattle artist Claudia Fitch at the Gresham Center for the Arts Plaza.

Artwork Requirements
All artwork for the transit system must be durable, vandal resistant, low maintenance and contribute to a sense of safety and security. The design must have a strong vertical emphasis and should not create seating or otherwise severely restrict sightlines. The artwork must be structurally engineered, and undergo conservation, safety and security reviews.

The budget for the commission is $110,000. The design fee for the commissions is $22,000 or twenty-percent of the assigned budget, with $88,000 or eighty-percent of the fee available for fabrication of the sculpture. The commission covers all project expenses including artist fees, community outreach, presentations, design, structural engineering, materials, fabrication, insurance, travel, and contingency. TriMet will work with the selected artist/artist team to develop the itemized project budget.

Selection Process and Criteria
The Selection Panel includes artists, other arts professionals, TriMet’s Agency Architect, and members of the Gresham Art Committee. The Selection Panel will review artists’ submissions and may choose up to three artists/artist teams to interview for the commission. TriMet’s commitment to equity and inclusivity will inform the process of selecting an artist/artist team and when evaluating past work.

Criteria for selecting finalists include:
Stated interest in creating site-specific artwork that can meet the identified project goals;
2. Quality of past work as demonstrated in submitted images;
3. Demonstrated ability to complete the work on time and on budget; professional references.

The selection panel is not required to commission an individual from among the submitting artists and reserves the right to select an artist who does not submit, if appropriate. The issuance of this Request for Qualifications does not obligate TriMet to award a contract.


Professional, practicing artists/artist teams living in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, California, Nevada and British Columbia are eligible to submit an application in response to this Request for Qualifications. If applying as a team, at least one member must meet the eligibility requirement. Artwork must be fabricated in the United States.

TriMet is committed to engaging new communities of artists and expanding the range of artistic and cultural expression represented in TriMet’s Public Art Collection.

How to apply
Applications for this project will be accepted through CaFÉ™, an online call for entry service. Incomplete applications will not be considered. Applicants will need to create an account or log into their existing account at If you need assistance using CaFÉ™ system, please email or call 303.629.1166.

All application materials are due by 11:59pm MST, Sunday, December 1, 2019. Please note that assistance with CaFÉ™ is only available Monday – Friday, 9am to 5pm MST.

Application materials
Applications must include the following:

1.     Statement of Interest – In 2000 or less characters and spaces, explain why this project is of interest to you and why you/your team are a good fit for the project. Do not submit a proposal for the commission.

2.     Up to ten images of past work including details. Visual images are the primary way the quality of your work is judged. Provide no more than two images per artwork. Do not submit multiple images in a single entry, unless contrasting day and nighttime views of the same artwork. Up to one video of past work, no longer than 1 minute long, may be submitted. Provide title, year completed, dimensions, media, budget and a brief description for each submission.

3.     One-to-two page résumé/bio uploaded as a PDF that includes your address, phone number, email and web address (if available), a brief biography and outline of professional accomplishments. Include two professional references including their organizational affiliation, email address and phone number. The biography should be written in a manner for potential future release to the media. If applying as a team, submit a resume/bio for each team member. Teams must indicate a lead artist as a single point of contact and for contracting purposes.

Project Timeline*

·         Submissions due: December 1, 2019

·         Finalists selection: December 11, 2019

·         Concept Proposal due: March 11, 2020

·         Concept Proposal presentation: March 18, 2020

·         Final Design due: May 13, 2020

·         Final Design presentation: May 20, 2020

·         Fabrication: June, 2020 - April, 2021

·         Delivery/Installation timeframe: May - June, 2021

*This schedule may be subject to change.

Selection Panel

Bogdan Gheorghe         Sculptor, Gresham Resident

Bob Hastings                 Agency Architect, TriMet

Peggy Kendellen           Senior Public Art Manager, Regional Arts and Culture Council

Nathan Orosco              Visual Arts Faculty, Mt Hood Community College

Linda Tesner                  Interim Head, Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, Portland State University

Hoan Tran                      Drawing & IB Art Teacher, Gresham High School

Michelle Traver, Public Art Program Administrator, 503.962.2159 or

TriMet respects the civil rights of all the people we serve. We operate our programs without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender, sexual orientation, age or disability, in accordance with applicable law.