Friday, April 13, 2012 | 2 a.m.
Several projects designed to enhance the appearance of Las Vegas were recognized this week by Mayor Carolyn Goodman as part of the annual Mayor’s Urban Design Awards. Goodman announced the winners Wednesday night during her first State of the City address inside the new City Hall.
“These projects set an example for future projects that will only add to the ongoing momentum of our renaissance,” Goodman said.
To qualify, projects had to be within city limits, enhance public spaces, promote pedestrian safety, conserve resources, and preserve historic buildings and places.
Nominations for the annual awards are accepted each fall in the following categories: public places, building and environment, historic preservation and adaptive reuse, and public art. Here’s a look at the winners announced Wednesday:
Public Places: First Street Beautification
The First Street project, located in the Arts District, was intended to help revitalize downtown. The project is located along First Street from Boulder Avenue to Hoover Avenue, and along Hoover from Casino Center Boulevard to Main Street.
Trees, tree grates, sidewalk and intersection improvements, streetlights, benches, trash receptacles, pavers and planters were all installed to create a safe, comfortable and enjoyable pedestrian environment while accommodating automobile traffic, the mayor said.
Jorge Cervantes, director of the city’s public works department, received the award.
Buildings and Environment: Nevada State Museum
Opened in October 2011 at the Springs Preserve, the museum, which cost $51.5 million, features exhibits that span the history of the entire state. The 70,000-square-foot facility has 13,000 square feet of exhibit space, a research library, educational lab and meeting rooms.
“Designed by Steelman Partners, the museum’s architecture takes its form from the surrounding Nevada desert,” Goodman said.
David Millman, the museum’s director, received the award.
Historic Preservation and Adaptive Reuse: Home at 1211 S. 16th St.
Karen Cornell, owner of the 1947 home, received $1,500 from the HomeFree Nevada program for energy-efficient upgrades that will reduce her energy consumption and energy costs by more than $400 a year, Goodman said.
The work included sealing ducts, installing new window panes in existing frames, HVAC upgrades and an Energy Star refrigerator.
“All of the work respected the historic exterior of the house,” Goodman said. “This project demonstrates that the most sustainable building is an existing building.”
Public Art: “Pole Dancers”
“Pole Dancers,” created by Las Vegas artist Martin Kreloff, is one of three works of art on the Cultural Corridor Trail that won the Public Art award. The Cultural Corridor trail spans 12 blocks from the Mob Museum, 300 E. Stewart Ave., to the Old Mormon Fort, 500 E. Washington Ave.
The city’s Arts Commission arranged for site-specific art to enhance the corridor.
“Pole Dancers” are banners representing each cultural institution along the trail. “Each brightly painted banner features the hands of humanity in action, presenting a compelling tale of Las Vegas activism and achievement,” Goodman said.
Rob McCoy, chairman of the Las Vegas Arts Commission, received the award.
Public Art: “Vegas Arabesque”
“Vegas Arabesque,” created by Denver-based artist David Griggs, is another work of art on the Cultural Corridor Trail Improvement Project. The neon bridge enhancement pays homage to Las Vegas history, using Southwest colors and a design rhythm that suggests the visual splendor of a Vegas chorus line, Goodman said.
Public Art: “Flourish”
“Flourish,” created by Las Vegas artist Denise Duarte, is the third work of art on the Cultural Corridor Trail Improvement Project. It consists of eight sidewalk enhancements that coincide with the banners and entice pedestrians and vehicles to follow the trail to cultural institutions, Goodman said.
“Each flourish incorporates the institution’s unique logo, cultural personality, history and purpose,” she said.