Sometimes railroad bridges just need a little paint.
However, what is going on in Muskegon, Mich., is more than your standard paint job. Back in December, the Muskegon City Public Art Initiative (MCPAI) started a fundraiser for murals to be painted on both sides over railroad overpasses on Seaway Drive between Laketon and Hackley avenues. The overpasses are owned by CSX.
The fundraiser has successfully met a $50,000 goal, which will be matched by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s Public Spaces, Community Places. The total cost of the project is $212,000. A grant from the Howmet Aerospace Foundation, $68,000 from the city of Muskegon and money from the MCPAI will cover the rest of the cost.
One of the bridges has been cleaned and primed for the painting, and the second span will be ready later in the spring. Artists are expected to work on the bridges in May, with completion set for Memorial Day.
Residents voted on which mural designs would be displayed on the bridges. The finalists feature the diverse faces of Muskegon, the city’s proximity to water, the history of Muskegon and abstractions similar to 20th century artists.