Downtown San Luis Obispo is a bit more colorful thanks to a new public art project at the entry to the Marsh Street Parking Structure (871 Marsh Street). The city-led project, titled the Archway to Happiness was the joint-work of the City’s Promotional Coordinating Committee, Parking Division, and the Public Art Program. The team at Canned Pineapple Co. designed the artwork to celebrate San Luis Obispo’s dynamic community and create an entry into downtown. Their vision was to emote a warm San Luis Obispo welcome, using imagery that embodies the spirit of the community.

“With all of the impacts related to COVID-19, the Archway to Happiness is a bright way to re-welcome the community back into downtown as we gradually reopen”, said San Luis Obispo City Manager, Derek Johnson. 

The City of San Luis Obispo continues to complete projects in the Downtown during the Shelter at Home Order that invest in downtown vitality to support the community’s economic recovery.  It is important that the community continues to follow the guidelines of the Shelter at Home order, including practicing physical distancing and limiting travel to permitted work, errands and local shopping. Community members can also support our local businesses through online, pick-up and curbside services.

The City of San Luis Obispo drives public art that respects our past and embraces the future, supporting all members and facets of the community and the pursuit of sustainability, diversity, and inclusivity.  The City of San Luis Obispo strives to incorporate these values into public spaces through the proliferation of public art. The Archway to Happiness is a model project that embodies those values.

This year the City of San Luis Obispo Public Art Program is celebrating its 30-year anniversary. In 1990, the San Luis Obispo City Council established and funded the program which now features over one-hundred pieces in the current public art inventory.  The City’s robust public art program includes permanent public art pieces located throughout the community as well as “temporary” public art installations, including the utility box art program.

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