Public Art: A Guide for Developers
Hastings Borough Council Local Plan para 9.49:
Where major developments are proposed, the Council will seek a contribution towards Public Art from developers. The nature of the contribution will be negotiated with the developer and will take the form, either of provision for works of art or artists' input to the building and its surroundings, or through a financial contribution towards Public Art works, arts facilities or events.
The type of Public Art and level of contribution will depend on the nature of the development proposal, the characteristics of the site and its surroundings. However, a nationally acceptable guideline is that it will be around 1% of the construction costs.
Policy DG20 Public Art - Hastings Borough Council Local Plan:
A material consideration in the determination of a planning application for a major development scheme will be the provision of Public Art. The Council will have regard to the contribution that would be made by any such works or effect to the appearance of the scheme and to the character of the area.
Hastings Borough Council Public Art Strategy:
Major developments are defined in this context as 'all developments over 25 units/1.25 hectares housing or over 1000 sqm floor space retail/business/leisure/health/education/or industrial will have a requirement for Public Art.'
Benefits of Public Art
Successful Public Art improves the quality of an environment, making it a more attractive place to work or live. This in turn can help increase the value of the property or site. It may also attract other investors or buyers to the area, further increasing area quality and site value.
Not just a Picture or a Statue
The artist's contribution can take many forms, and is more than just displaying a piece of art or a statue.
Artists have designed fittings as small as taps, door handles, handrails, railings, windows and seating, giving spaces uniqueness and quality, whilst not necessarily increasing project expenditure.
Artists have designed the surroundings to the site – gardens, play areas, paving, signage and seating, working with landscapers and local communities to provide ideas on the routes and shapes of walkways, parking and drive-throughs.
An artist can often help express alternative ideas about a design, and help enhance the development. The earlier an artist is involved in the development and design of a building or space, the more their contribution is likely to be successfully integrated in to the project.
For example, if a wall has to be built at a certain point, it might be suitable for an artist to determine the materials of that wall, or its colours - in other words - design it, working with architects.
Or an artist might design the necessary internal or external lighting in a way that was functional but enhanced the building or site at night.
Where there is a need for community involvement such as consultation at design stage, artists are often used to engage with local people, as they have the ability to reach those who are often not represented through the normal channels such as tenants associations, committees etc.
We have a Statement of Community Involvement that lays out how we expect developers to involve communities at the pre-application stage. Involving an artist can help facilitate this involvement.
Case studies have shown that elements of new build that are led by an artist with community input, obtain the approval and ownership of local people and can reduce the potential for vandalism and crime, supporting wider Council objectives to make the town a safer place.
Pride of Place
If your finished site has something about it which makes it a bit different, and adds to its quality, then the people who work or live there may take pride in it, respect it and may well want to continue working or living in it.
And this adds quality to life and value to the property.
In appropriate developments a Section 106 Legal Agreement may be required to secure any agreed artwork. Such an Agreement may also be used to ensure that an agreed specific sum of money is spent on art and specifies the input of artists within the design process.
This Agreement would also normally specify a time scale by which the artwork should be provided.