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Bicycle Rack Call to Artists

Longmont, Colorado

Deadline for submissions:  August 30, 2013

The Art in Public Places Commission of the City of Longmont announces a Call to Artists to design and develop two functional and creative bicycle racks.  One of these fun and creative racks will be  installed at 1st and Main Streets in Longmont, Colorado,(new) home to Cheese Importers  The second location to be enhanced by artistic bicycle parking is adjacent to the library, in close proximity to the Civic Center.  Exact locations for both sites will be determined once the winning racks have been selected.

Cheese Importers is a local family owned business that has been a part of the Longmont community since 1976.  It moved into the current location at 1st & Main Streets in August 2012, a location that is being leased from the City of Longmont.  This location is highly visible to the more than 13,000+ vehicles that pass by in each direction on a typical weekday.  Additionally, this location falls within the Arts & Entertainment district of Longmont, and lies just South of the downtown business district.

The library is the only library in the City that serves this community of nearly 87,000 residents.  In addition to the thousands of books available, the library offers extensive programming to kids, teens and adults, a large selection of CDs and DVDs, as well as the use of computers, community rooms, and other resources that make this facility a real gem to all of the Community members who possess a free library card.

cheese importers back entrance

Cheese Importers - back entrance

Site History

When Longmont was founded in 1871, Main Street was already a well-established thoroughfare, part of the Cherokee Trail running from Denver north to Cheyenne. The town of Longmont was laid out in a square mile, with First Avenue as the southernmost road.  The railroad arrived at 1st and Main in the 1870s, and the area began to develop as part of the industrial spine of Longmont. In 1886, the Farmer’s Milling and Elevator company, a large flour mill, was built between first and second on the west side of Main Street. This three-story brick building dominated the south end of Longmont.  The building had several fires, and was finally demolished in the 1970s to create a parking lot.

The stone depot at 1st and Main was built in the early 1900s, and was the last passenger depot in service in Longmont.

In 1930, the City began construction of a diesel electric generation plan at 1st and Main, to supplement the power provided by Longmont’s original hydropower plant near Lyons. It was a primary source of power from 1931 through 1958, and was a stand-by power source until 1967, when the diesel engines were sold. Through the 1970s, 1980s, and into the 1990s it was used by the City of Longmont Sanitation department. In 1998 it was renovated and restored. A second floor was added to store the Longmont Museum’s collections.  The Museum moved its collections out in 2012 and Cheese Importers moved in.

library - front

library - front entrance

Bicycle Friendly Community

Longmont has been awarded a “Bicycle Friendly Community” by the League of American Bicyclists consistently since 2002.   As the City grows in population, more and more people are riding bikes to various destinations within the City, as well as to school, work and for recreation. The City is actively implementing a program to replace all of the older (“wheelbender”) racks.   In 2006, Bicycle Longmont, a 501© 3 organization was formed by community members who saw a need to continue to address the needs of cyclists and that organization is active within the community as it strives to educate, encourage and advocate for bicyclists in and around Longmont.

Longmont has seven (artist designed and fabricated) bicycle racks already in it’s collection, including one at each of the five pools in town, including outdoor kiddie pools and indoor pools, as well as some of the parks.  Additionally, Art in Public Places has worked with children in the community to paint 25 inverted U bicycle racks that line many of the downtown streets and avenues as well as enhance the parks and city facilities.  Each of these racks is well used.

City Requirements

The City of Longmont, in its Ordinance, requires that “the minimal number of bicycle parking spaces shall equal no less than 5% of the automobile parking available for that business or development.”


Art in Public Places is funded from 1% of Capital Improvement Projects exceeding $50,000 within the City.  The Ordinance was adopted in 1989, and since that time, there are more than 50 pieces that have been installed in the permanent collection.  For more information about Longmont’s public art program, go to

Cheese Importers - 287 entrance

Cheese Importers - front entrance (287/Main Street)

Artwork Specifics:

Bicycle racks must meet the following criteria and must accommodate between at least eight – and preferably 12 - bicycles, locked up, each with two points of contact so as to minimize “wheel bending.”

Additional considerations:

Racks may be colorful, whimsical and imaginative; “pro bike” or “pro environmental” messages may be incorporated; any “hints” as to the use of the bicycle rack are encouraged (i.e some artistic bicycle racks are not identifiable as such).

Art in Public Places will be responsible for the installation of bike rack per artists’ specifications.  This is to minimize insurance requirements and costs to artists. 

Bicycle racks must be identifiable as such, and artist may incorporate a bicycle into the design or the AIPP Commission may choose place “bicycle parking” identification to the rack or within the vicinity of such.

Submission Requirements:

Artists may submit electronic images or (hard copy) sketches on 8 ½ x 11 sheets of paper; color or black and white.  Artists may submit up to two proposals each for consideration.  

On a separate sheet/file, please include:


This is open to artists residing in the USA.   The AIPP Commission encourages artists from all cultural, ethnic, and economic backgrounds to apply. 

The Competition:

A citizen selection panel, comprised of citizens, bicycle enthusiasts, Cheese Importers staff and representatives from the library will review all designs and select a winner.  Upon notification, winner shall submit installation specs for the AIPP/City of Longmont engineering task force to review.  Upon notification/contractual agreement, artist will have approximately twelve weeks to complete the work and ship them to Longmont.


The winning artist will receive $4500 for the final design and completed and delivered bicycle rack.  A travel or shipping stipend of up to $500 is available; the City will be responsible for installation and all of the associated costs thereof.


July 2013                    call to artists

ust 30                   submissions due

September 23 (week of)  winners notified

Our hope is to have the project completed and installed by November, 2013.  We realize that there are often delays in projects such as these.

Please submit materials by August 30, 2013 to:

Lauren Greenfield

Art in Public Places Administrator

City of Longmont

400 Quail Road

Longmont, CO  80501