Call for Artists: Cultural District Bicycle Racks





Pittsburgh, PA – The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust announces the third phase of the bicycle rack project, the second phase of ten artist-designed racks having been completed in October 2015. The Trust invites Pittsburgh-area artists (residents of Allegheny County) to design and develop functional bicycle racks to be installed in various locations within the Cultural District. The third phase of the project will produce ten bicycle racks.

For over 30 years, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust has kept quality aesthetics and design as a guiding principle in the development of Pittsburgh’s Cultural District. We believe how our environment looks and feels contributes greatly to how we look at and shape the world around us. Even a bicycle rack can be transformed into a work of art in a marriage of form and function. The project was produced in collaboration with Bike Pittsburgh, and the Bicycle/Pedestrian Coordinator for the City of Pittsburgh. The Cultural District Public Art Bike Racks have been made possible through the generous support of the Colcom Foundation.

For more information on the bike rach and their Cultural District locations, visit

The deadline for the request for proposals in December 9th, 2016.


Each selected artists will receive a fee of $4,000 to create a unique and functional bicycle rack. This fee covers the costs for design, fabrication, finishing, and transportation of the completed bicycle rack to the installation site. The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust is responsible for the cost of installation and naming plaques.

 Specifications for Design

  • The bicycle rack finish is to be galvanized steel (either raw and/or powder coated), aluminum, or stainless steel. No other finishes, including hand-painted finishes will be accepted.
  • The bicycle rack should support two or more bikes.
  • The bicycle rack must allow for ease of locking utilizing a commonly used “U”  lock or longer cable lock and allow for the locking of a bike in two places, including one wheel.
  • Each bicycle parking space should be easily accessible without moving another bicycle for access or maneuvering.
  • Base plates should be a minimum of 3/8” thick steel or aluminum with the ability to be bolted to a concrete pad in four places. 


  • All bicycle rack designs must adhere to all Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards for protrusions in the right-of-way, including the ability to detect the rack with a white cane. To be detected by a white cane, the protruding or leading edge of the rack shall be 27” high or less above the sidewalk surface. The protruding or leading edge may overhang a maximum of 12”.
  • The top of the bicycle rack design must be a minimum of 36” tall. Except for the bicycle rack supporting brackets, the shortest section of bicycle rack must be a minimum of 27” tall, tall enough to be perceived by pedestrians and avoid tripping hazards.
  • The space between the rack features must be larger than 9” and smaller than 3.5’ to avoid children trapping their heads.
  • The design must not include sharp edges.

How to Apply

Each artist must submit the following for consideration:

  • Resume
  • A minimum of five images of completed works from his or her portfolio
  • A brief artist statement (no more than one page) on his or her approach to this project
  • Three references with contact information
  • Please present scale drawings of the proposed bike rack with scale measurements of the entire proposal. Indicated the maximum number of bikes you expect to be able to utilize the rack at any given time.

Artists who have previously applied to the program and were not accepted are welcome to apply again. 

Please send proposal files using,, Google drive, or, or send them to

Project Timeline

  • Request for Proposals deadline is December 9th, 2016
  • Notification to selected artists is January 30th, 2017
  • Installation of bicycle racks by August 31st, 2017

About the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust
The Pittsburgh Cultural Trust has overseen one of Pittsburgh’s most historic transformations: turning a seedy red-light district into a magnet destination for arts lovers, residents, visitors, and business owners. Founded in 1984, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust is a non-profit arts organization whose mission is the cultural and economic revitalization of a 14-block arts and entertainment/residential neighborhood called the Cultural District. The District is one of the country’s largest landmasses curated by a single nonprofit arts organization. A major catalytic force in the city, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust is a unique model of how public-private partnerships can reinvent a city with authenticity, innovation and creativity. Using the arts as an economic catalyst, the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust has holistically created a world-renowned Cultural District that is revitalizing the city, improving the regional economy and enhancing Pittsburgh’s quality of life. Thanks to the support of foundations, corporations, government agencies and thousands of private citizens, the Cultural Trust stands as a national model of urban redevelopment through the arts.

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