Call Detail
Public Art: 88th RTD Station
Entry Deadline: 5/14/20
Application Closed
Work Sample Requirements
Images | Minimum:Min. 4, Maximum:Max. 20
Video | Minimum:Min. 0, Maximum:Max. 2
Total Samples | Minimum:Min. 4, Maximum:Max. 22
Call Type: Public Art
Eligibility: National
State: Colorado
Event Dates: 1/1/19 - 1/1/19


The city of Thornton, in collaboration with the Regional Transportation District (RTD) is seeking to purchase existing (prefabricated), 3D, large-scale public art work for our station located in Original Thornton on 88th Avenue and Welby Road. The public art work that will serve as a gateway (entrance) into Thornton. The purchased work should touch on the station’s overall theme and have a strong visual impact that will push Thornton into a contemporary setting and help it become a destination-city; engaged in contemporary conversations on art and culture.


About RTD

The RTD of Denver, Colorado is the transportation agency for an eight-county area in Colorado serving a population of 2.8 million people. RTD, in collaboration with the city of Thornton, have committed to increasing the number of original commissioned pieces of art throughout its district. RTD and the city of Thornton are pleased to announce a series of commissioned art opportunities on the N Line (referred to as the North Metro Rail Line during construction). The N Line brings RTD train service through Denver, Commerce City, Northglenn, Thornton and North Adams County. Three stations in Thornton are currently under construction and include, Original Thornton at 88th, Thornton Crossroads at 104th, and Eastlake at 124th.


The process for public art will unfold in phases. These major works are the final phase and will serve as the major landmarks for all three stations.


History of Original Thornton

Coined, “Colorado’s newest city”, construction was started in 1953 by Sam Hoffman. Hoffman’s F & S Construction Company built 10 homes a day and promised “modern living” to young families looking to start anew in post-World War II America. Hoffman generated excitement by inviting Hollywood movie star, Jane Russell to decorate model show-homes and greet people coming to view the new housing development. The first family moved into Thornton on January 30, 1954 and many more would come to put down roots in their very own Hoffman Home.


Thornton’s history is deeply rooted in community and volunteerism. When Thornton’s first residents moved in, there were no gas stations, grocery stores, or street lights. Residents came together to form civic groups in order to raise funds for infrastructure, a fire truck and ambulance. The first officers of the Thornton Police Department served without pay, used their own cars to patrol and paid for their own gasoline. The Thornton Junior Women’s Club raised money to build parks and Thornton’s first community building. The club was also the driving force behind public art in Thornton.


Community members gave their time and dedicated themselves to turning what was once farmland, into a place they were proud to call home. Their efforts set a strong foundation for progress and are the reason Thornton has grown into the city it is today.   


Key Themes and Objectives

This is an opportunity to install public art that will be a unique and creative addition to Thornton’s public art collection in addition to making a positive impact on all who visit this Thornton station. Successful could embody the 1950s theme and or touch on concepts of community or volunteerism.

Strong proposals will also demonstrate the following:

{C}·         Cohesive design.

{C}·         Dynamic use of color, composition and style elements that create a visual impact.

{C}·         Interdisciplinary practice with an emphasis on creative and innovative materials as well as technology.    

{C}·         Experience in large scale fabrication and installation of landmark works.

{C}·         Holistic approach to place-making and (re)activation of a physical space.

{C}·         Strong understanding of contemporary art and its positive effect on public space and community identity.

{C}·         Understanding of the specialized needs and materials needed for durable, outdoor public work. 

{C}·         Understanding of the diversity and unique character that make the city of Thornton a special place to live, work, and play.      


This nationwide call is open to all artists, design teams, architectural firms, etc., age 18 and over, regardless of race, sex, color, religion, national origin, gender identity, age, military status, sexual orientation, marital status, or disability.

Preference will be given to those with existing designs and/or prefabricated work that is ready for purchase and can meet the scope of this project.

Special consideration will be made for applicants who may not have prefabricated work, but are confident in their ability to fabricate, complete, and install work to meet the demands of the project scope as well as the strict deadlines.  

City of Thornton employees are not eligible.


Deadlines and Commitments

This project is an intergovernmental collaboration. Both parties are required to meet specific deadlines set by stakeholders. The project scope and deadline is dictated by an Intergovernmental Agreement. Please ensure that you are able to meet the requirements set by this agreement before applying to this call. Applicants who are confident in their ability to fabricate, complete, and install work before the deadlines are strongly encouraged to apply.

The final deadline for this project is set for December 31, 2020. Work must be installed and all billing completed by the final deadline.

Site Locations and Footprint

The 88th station has designated one area for the installation of work.

{C}·         Bus/Vehicle Roundabout

(Must be completed and installed no later than December 31, 2020)

The viable area inside both the inner and outer circle with a 4-foot clearance of the curb. The     border between the inner circle and the bus lane is 12 feet. There is a height restriction of 23 feet. The site has irrigation for the landscaping within the inner circle.

Additional information, drawings, and photos can be downloaded by clicking the following link:


RTD Art Guidelines

{C}1.       The movement, safety and security of pedestrians is priority.

{C}2.       The artwork will be outside and exposed to elements. It must be able to withstand the constantly changing weather conditions of Colorado. These conditions may include a wide fluctuation in temperature and intense, direct sunlight.

{C}3.       Materials used must be durable and require little and/or easy maintenance.

{C}4.       Prior approval for use of electricity is needed. 

{C}5.       Works proposed any locations by the tracks must not violate any of the clearance and safety regulations concerning the overhead electrical wires or impede with any train operations.

{C}6.       Details and calculations for art needed if there are any connections to RTD infrastructure.

{C}7.       Contractor will be required to coordinate installation activities with RTD’s North Metro Contractor.

{C}8.       Depending upon the proposed art, at RTD’s discretion, the design may have to be presented and accepted by RTD’s Executive Safety and Security Group.




The project budget is $77,000, which is inclusive of artist design fees and costs associated with fabrication, transportation, shipping, installation, insurance, engineered drawings, permits.


Review Process and Award Approval

The RTD Review Panel will consist of stakeholders, including artists, community members, business owners and RTD staff. This review process may be split into three rounds:


 Portfolio Review: May - June 

The panel will review a portfolio of existing work and/or designs available for purchase. Applicants are encouraged to submit 5 – 20 pieces that highlight their skills and creativity.


Based on the applicant’s body of work, the panel will identify one piece or design that will be purchased and installed at the 104th station. The piece will be selected based on skill level, artistic merit, and the overall impact of the piece. The finalist will be notified and the recommendation process will begin.


Information will be sent out via email and/or  as it is made available by the RTD Review Panel.    


Public Forum and Additional Feedback (If needed)

Depending on needs identified by the panel, the finalist may be asked to present their site-specific proposal in a public forum setting for a larger group of community members, RTD employees, and/or Thornton City Council. Artists will be notified ahead of time if additional feedback is needed.


Recommendations and Final Approval

Please note that no project is officially awarded without final approval from Thornton City Council. The RTD Review Panel will make a recommendation to the Thornton Arts, Sciences and Humanities Council (TASHCO) for approval. If approved, TASHCO will then present their recommendation for purchase to Thornton City Council. Thornton Council Members may request additional information to support the public art recommendation or approve the award.  


Final Award: July  

Upon final approval by Thornton City Council, the award winner will begin to enter into contracts and purchasing agreements with the city of Thornton. The selected applicant will be notified by Wednesday, July 1.     


Planning and Install: July – December

The award winner will coordinate with RTD and city staff to finalize all implementation plans for this public art project.


Submission Requirements

Please visit to submit an application and submission materials.


By submitting your application and materials in response to this project RFP/RFQ, you are agreeing to abide by all terms and conditions imposed by Westcafe for use of CAFÉ ( You agree to indemnify and hold harmless the City of Thornton for any claim, cause of action, lawsuit and/or damages related to your use of CAFÉ for this RFP. Incomplete submissions will not be accepted. Incomplete submissions will not be accepted.

Please include all of the following materials to secure your place in the first review:

{C}·         Portfolio

5 - 20 images of existing work and/or designs available for purchase. Please ensure this work showcases your creativity, and ability to meet the demands of this project scope.    

{C}·         Statement

Written statement or video detailing your creative process, drive and/or philosophy.

{C}·         Resume/CV with 3 – 5 professional references.


The finalist will submit a site-specific proposal which may include following:

{C}·         Itemized budget including shipping, install, insurance costs.

{C}·         Implementation schedule

{C}·         Project narrative

{C}·         Materials list (including supplier information)

{C}·         Warranty information

{C}·         Maintenance information (including procedures, timeline and estimated city costs)

{C}·         Contractors (if any)



Will I have access to electrical or other infrastructure?  Possibly. This will need to be approved by RTD. Additional costs that will need to come out of the project budget.  We encourage applicants to utilize renewable energy in their work whenever possible. 


Can my work incorporate different languages?  Applicants are encouraged to use unique themes and designs to touch on the station theme and highlight the diverse cultures and languages that make Thornton a wonderful place to live, work, and play.


Do I need to be a Colorado resident to apply to this call?  No, this is a nationwide call and will be promoted on several platforms.


Will my name be included in publications? Yes. The project winner will sign an agreement granting Thornton permission to display materials associated with the work. The award winner will be noted for their work.


How will I coordinate installation with RTD and city of Thornton staff? Key staff have been identified to work with the award winner and coordinate the installation of the purchased piece.



Due to the impact of COVID-19, all timelines and budgets for this, and other public art projects are subject to change. These changes will be determined by City Council. Staff will communicate any changes or delays to applicants as the information becomes available. All efforts are being made to continue supporting creative expression and artists. We thank you for your understanding and patience as we navigate these challenging times.


Additional Questions?

Please contact Jesse Jimenez, Arts & Culture Coordinator at 720-977-5881 or

Application Requirements

Eligibility Criteria