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White Rock approves up to $80,000 for waterfront sculpture

Historical sculptures by artists Nathan Scott and Denis Kleine are examples of ideas for the plaza outside White Rock Museum & Archives presented to council by the public art task force. - Contributed
Historical sculptures by artists Nathan Scott and Denis Kleine are examples of ideas for the plaza outside White Rock Museum & Archives presented to council by the public art task force.
— image credit: Contributed

Funds for the creation and installation of a bronze sculpture celebrating the history of the White Rock train station have been approved.

Following a report by leisure services director Eric Stepura, White Rock council voted unanimously Monday night to spend up to $80,000 for the artwork.

The piece is to be complete and in place “no later than November,” Stepura said.

Created in January, the public-art task force was directed at that time to select a piece of public art for the site.

Prior to Monday’s vote, Stepura told council that only “a very small, select group of artists” create bronze statues. The pricey pieces take four to five months to make, but last “a very, very, very long time,” he said.

“We feel it’s a good investment.”

Designs considered for the waterfront sculpture include a conductor or family waiting for a train; or something that shows the joy of seeing a family member arrive by train.

Stepura predicted the sculpture will be “highly photographed,” and that it will also boost interest in the museum.

In response to a question from Coun. Al Campbell, Stepura confirmed that council will have input into the final design.

Coun. Louise Hutchinson noted that the sculpture plan was devised in consultation with museum officials, including archives manager Hugh Ellenwood. Noting the final piece will be guided by the funds available, she said “it will be the best we can have for the money we have.”

The funds are to come from the community public-art project budget, which currently has $90,050 available. The budget gets a $50,000 injection every year.

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