The City of Asheville has cleared gravel off the City-owned property at 68 Haywood Street and is making other modest improvements to make way for public access and temporary uses of this City-owned site. The City has now issued a “Request for Expressions of Interest,” seeking ideas for organizing temporary programs in the space. It is posted on the City of Asheville’s Requests for Bids & Proposals webpage.
The primary goal of opening 68 Haywood Street for temporary uses is to activate the space, which would otherwise be vacant, on an interim basis while next steps towards long-term planning and implementation are underway following the recently completed community visioning process.
The site presents interim opportunities to support creative and innovative activities that encourage community interaction. The goal is to enable the community to use the space for programming that will enhance quality of life in Asheville, and be compatible with the surrounding neighborhood.
How we got here
In December 2015, City Council directed staff to conduct a community visioning process to inform long-term decision making about this and other surrounding City-owned properties. In March 2016, Council contracted with the Asheville Design Center to serve as a facilitator for a Council-appointed a Community Advisory team to develop a long-term vision for the properties. Concurrent to soliciting feedback and developing a community vision, the Advisory Team also considered possible temporary uses that could activate the site and inform next steps of the planning and design process. In December 2016, the Advisory Team presented to City Council the following recommended temporary uses and installations:
- Raised garden beds
- Mobile food vending
- Open vendor markets
- Movable seating
- Interactive public art
- Designated performance space
Following the recommendations, Council directed staff to proceed toward implementation.
One component that’s already underway, is a temporary community garden at 33-35 Page Avenue – one of several sites included in the City’s recently launched Community Gardens Program.
Now, an exciting opportunity
Opening 68 Haywood Street for temporary use by the community can help inform the short- and long-term success of this and other public spaces.
We are excited to hear your ideas!
Programming proposed as part of this request should take place between Aug. 1, 2017 and Aug. 1, 2018. Once this open call has completed, the site will also be made available for special events through the City’s existing Outdoor Special Event process.
Considering the temporary nature of this initiative, the City intends to keep expenses to a minimum, and look to the community as a partner. Downtown is a place for people to live, work, gather and recreate, so proposers should also keep nearby residents and businesses in mind when developing their ideas.
Site visit and Q&A
City staff conducted a meeting and question and answer session on-site at 68 Haywood Street on June 14.
Out of that meeting and other inquiries, the City has assembled answers to questions about this project.
Questions can be emailed to CDapplications@ashevillenc.gov. Written responses to all questions will be made available.
The deadline for proposals is 5 p.m. June 26.