Business View Magazine | December 2018

346 347 pillars of the community-one was an educator,W.B. Wicker, and the other one was Link Boykin,who in the early 1900s had a brickmason business that, at one time, employed up to 100 brickmasons.The FairviewDairymural is the first three dimensional mural in North Carolina; the mural is 50 feet tall and about 60 feet long. It’s actually on the building where the FairviewDairy was, originally, although it’s no longer in existence. But the people that ran it are still here in the area.We are in the process of doing another mural that recognizes all the art in Sanford. It’s a ten-foot diameter wheel that you can spin.We’re pretty excited about that one.” The City is also getting several “ghost signs” redone.A ghost sign is an old, hand-painted adver- tising sign that has been preserved on a building for an extended period of time.“Coca-Cola paid to have all of our Coke ghost signs redone–there were four of them, downtown,” says Whitmore.“We’re also hav- ing the Sanford Business College sign redone.” Another part of the Public Arts Initiative cel- ebrates the City’s iconic train engine No. 12.“We had 13 little bronze trains made that are going to be permanently installed throughout downtown,” Whitmore notes.“We developed a scavenger hunt/ discovery trail for people to find them.When they do, they have a little passport book they get stamped and they get an engineer’s cap.We also have an ‘Art on Fire’ program,which is 18 fire hydrants down- town,where we have had high school students submit artwork so that they could paint the fire hydrants.We provided the paint, and we’ve got half of those done.” “Once everything is completed,we’ll have about $240,000 worth of public art in the City of Sanford, with a population of just 30,000 people,”Whitmore states.“It was important for us to keep our history alive for our young people because people forget. We also see it as an economic engine; we’ve had a $9.5 million streetscape improvement project downtown and with the mural project,we’ve had a lot of business owners invest in their properties or spruce up their exterior facades. So, our goal is to make our town an arts destination and I think we’re on our way to make that happen.” “Liz has done a super job of finding the private- ly-owned building owners who have wanted to come in and work with us.The building owners allowmurals to be placed on their walls and they have been financed by business owners, families, citizen donations, non-profits and others,”Mann exclaims.“So,we’ve got the private and the public sectors working together on this, and now,we’ve got a line of people who want to do more. So,we’ve re- 844.448.4333 I PROUD PARTNERS OF The City of Sanford Offering Multi-Disciplinary Consulting, Engineering, and Land Planning and Recreation Services “Leaders Serve People” IN OUR SERVICE n GC Building NC and SC n Highway and Utilities n NC Landscape Contractors n Building Renovations n Site Improvements n Highways Projects n Site development n Paving n Utility and Drainage Systems n Landscaping n Hydroseeding n Pavers ARMEN Construction is a member of The Associated General Contractor of America P: 980-819-9199 F: 980-237-7742 PREFERRED VENDORS n McGill Associates PA n Armen Construction LLC SANFORD, NORTH CAROLINA ally engaged our community; they’re buying into the organization and now they’re putting in their own money to beautify their own walls with these beau- tiful, historical murals.We’re a 140-year-old railroad town, and it’s really unlocked our heritage and our history for others to enjoy. It’s created a lot of pride in our citizens. It’s been a great way of connecting people to their city.” “We’re starting to notice that people are coming from other cities to seewhat we’re doing and others are coming to spend the daywith us,”Mann says in conclusion.“That has been a nice component of our economicdevelopment story–bringing our downtown alive through public art.And it’s opened up the creative flowof our citizens,who all seem to love it.We’re real proud of it; it’s changed our downtown‘vibe’and it makes peoplewant to consider living in Sanford.”