Payne Avenue Project

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The Payne Avenue Project is a community building and public art project focused on creating relationships while beautifying the intersection of East 22nd Street and Payne Avenue. The project is managed by Campus District, Inc. and is being completed in partnership with Campus International School, the Norma Herr Women's Shelter, Across the Lines: Community Arts Space, and fine artist Guy-Vincent. The project will bring public art, seating, and landscaping elements to the intersection designed and influenced by arts sessions and conversations amongst and between Campus International students and Norma Herr residents.

Payne Avenue is home to a wide cross-section of the Campus District community-- Cleveland State University students, Norma Herr Women’s Shelter residents, and 735 K-8th grade students from the Campus International School travel the street everyday. However, the street itself does not reflect dynamic energy of its community members. There is little that is friendly or engaging about the street which is most noticeably exemplified by the limited places for homeless women to comfortably sit and be shaded in front of the Norma Herr shelter who have few places to go during the day.

 In an effort to answer the question: "how can we make Payne Avenue a safe, comfortable, and beautiful place?"CDI started working with CIS 8th and 9th grade students in January of 2018 to explore public art and design concepts . The students interviewed peers, teachers, CIS staff, and residents of the Norma Herr Women's Shelter on the topic. Improvements like street furniture, public art, landscaping, and lighting were all suggested.

Inspired by these suggestions, during the summer of 2018, CDI worked with Across the Lines, collaborative arts space; fine artist, Guy-Vincent; and the YWCA, operator of Norma Herr to bring regular art programming to the women's shelter. The work created over the summer will be incorporated into two new pieces, designed by Guy-Vincent, that will be displayed on the shelter itself via a vinyl wrapping. Additionally, we will add some landscaping and seating to the building exterior that will be maintained by a group of CIS students, shelter residents, teachers, and shelter staff.

In the fall of 2018 CIS students and Norma Herr residents will come back together for a joint arts session, the product of which will be an companion art piece, designed by Guy-Vincent, to be displayed outside of the Campus International School building on Payne Avenue.