Request for Proposals

Emerald Place Resiliency Improvements: Public Art Design Plan

Project Overview

Easthampton City Arts (ECA) the ECA Public Art Committee, the Easthampton Planning Department, and Department of Public Works are pleased to announce a Request for Proposals (RFP) for a Design Plan for a new, original, environmentally-focused public artwork and/or design features that will be fabricated and installed on or adjacent to Emerald Place in the New City neighborhood of Easthampton, MA. 

Please note: this initial funding will support the development of the Design Plan only; additional funding will be provided at a later date to support the fabrication and installation of the proposed project. The review committee is looking for original proposals for a process by which a cohesive design for a permanent installation — related to climate change and/or environmental impact — will emerge through a strategic sequencing of research, community engagement, and thoughtful synthesization. To be clear, this first phase of the project will not be for the art installations, as these final designs will be generated as a result of a community process. Additional details regarding the process, timeline, and specifications are included below.

This project is being funded with an Action Grant from the Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness (MVP) Program from the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs. 

Design Plan Development

The selected Artist/Designer will create a Design Plan for a public installation that will address the local impacts of climate/environmental change. The form and content of the installation must be informed by neighborhood residents, the ECA Public Art Committee, and the City Project Team. The selected Artist/Designer will:

  • Conduct historical and environmental research
  • Initiate and organize community engagement with neighborhood residents
  • Synthesize their findings into a concept plan for a design
  • Create schematic designs and renderings for a permanent site-specific installation that depicts the relevant environmental and educational components
  • Create a cost estimate for fabrication and install of the proposed schematic design

This first phase will carry the project through schematic design, rendering, and cost estimate for which the selected artist will be given a $5,000 honorarium for their efforts. This will then allow the City and the Artist/Designer to develop an appropriate funding allocation (on the order of approximately $10,000) for a subsequent phase of fabrication and installation  and provide sufficient time to the artist for completion of their work. In the second phase of the project, the selected Artist/Designer is expected to either fabricate the work themselves or to participate by providing guidance and direction to the chosen fabricator  and will be given additional compensation at that time, in relation to their proposed level of involvement.

MAP The location for the proposed installation will be located on Emerald Place in the New City neighborhood of Easthampton, MA. Emerald Place sits at the top of a wooded slope overlooking Lower Mill Pond:,+Easthampton,+MA+01027

MVP Grant

The Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness (MVP) grant program, created in 2017 as part of Executive Order 569, provides support for communities in Massachusetts to identify climate hazards, assess vulnerabilities, and develop action plans to improve resilience to climate change. Communities that complete the MVP Planning Grant process become designated as an MVP Community and are eligible for MVP Action Grant funding to implement the priority actions identified through the planning process.

The MVP Action Grant program invests in local priorities that build climate resilience. This program supports proactive adaptation projects that utilize best available climate change data and projections, that are rooted in natural systems as much as possible, and that center environmental justice and equity.

The MVP Action Grant offers financial resources to communities that are seeking to advance priority climate adaptation actions to address climate change impacts resulting from extreme weather, sea level rise, inland and coastal flooding, severe heat, and other climate impacts.

For more information about the MVP program: 


PHASE ONE HONORARIUM: $5,000Please note that this funding will support the development of the Design Plan, as outlined above. Additional funding will be provided during Phase Two of this project. Additionally, the selected artist must provide a W9 form in order to be paid by the City of Easthampton and that payment processing can require up to 4-5 weeks. 

Guidelines & Design Specifications

  • The selected Artist/Designer must be able to strictly follow the timeline outlined above. 
  • The selected Artist/Designer is responsible for all of the above bolded deliverables (under timeline) and must complete them on schedule.
  • This is a site-specific installation related to climate change and environmental education. All applicants should be mindful of the project location, its history, its current use, and possible future impacts from climate change. 
  • The selected Artist/Designer must be at once clear with their vision and simultaneously flexible and able to incorporate relevant feedback as necessary from the City Project Team. 
  • Possibilities of the types of artwork/design features that could come out of this process include but are not limited to: sculpture, ground mural, pocket park element (ie: bench, bike rack, fencing), pedestrian bridge element (ie: guard rail, fencing), painted mural, mosaic art, kiosks, educational signage, interactive landscape elements, other decorative site design feature (ie: bollards, storm drain covers, storm drain stencils, fencing, guard rails), etc.

Selection Process

  • The selection committee will consist of representatives of the Easthampton City Planning Department, the ECA Public Art Subcommittee, the Department of Public Works, and additional municipal departments. The selection committee will review submitted applications for quality of response, relevant prior experience, and adequately addressing the RFPs stated goals. Should the selection committee desire to meet with a short-list of the top two or three rated applicants, then 30-45 minute interviews will be scheduled with the short list of applicants prior to making the final selection. 


  • This RFP is open to all applicants, 18 years and older.
  • ECA and the City of Easthampton are actively committed to supporting art and artists from historically underrepresented and marginalized groups of people. BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, Person of Color), Queer, and Trans artists are strongly encouraged to apply.
  • Applicants can be based anywhere, though applicants based in the New City neighborhood will be prioritized, followed by other residents of Easthampton, and finally other regional applicants. 
  • Previous experience with designing and fabricating public art installations is strongly encouraged and recommended, though it is not necessary.
  • Previous experience with designing, leading, organizing, and participating in effective and accessible community engagement processes is strongly valued and emphasized.
  • The selected Artist/Designer must be able to provide a W9 form in order to be paid by the City of Easthampton.
  • Please note that applications that do not meet these eligibility  requirements may be disqualified. 

Application Process & Questions

Please respond to the following Application Questions and include any renderings in one emailed .pdf document or one hardcopy package. 

Application materials can be emailed to Easthampton City Arts Program Director: with a subject line: Emerald Place RFP

OR mailed/delivered to: 

Easthampton City Arts

50 Payson Avenue

Easthampton, MA 01027 

ATTN: Emerald Place RFP

Please note: All designs and proposals submitted for this RFP will remain the intellectual property of the artist(s) that submitted them. However, ECA and the City of Easthampton and the MVP Program reserve the right to display any and all submitted designs/proposals in a gallery show, on their website, and/or in print media as publicity for the artists and/or ECA. 


    • Name
    • Street Address
    • Phone number
    • Email Address
    • Website
    • Project title
    • Project description (1000 words maximum):

Please be sure to address each of the following in your response:

  • Your ideas and intentions–and how they correlate with your proposed project
  • What types of historical and environmental research do you intend to conduct?
  • How does your proposed project address the theme of climate change and/or environmental education?
  • How are you planning to engage community members of all ages, abilities, and backgrounds to generate input?


    • Please describe in detail why you wish to participate in this project (250-500 words). Be sure to  include specific language about what climate change and environmental education mean to you 
    • Please describe in detail your qualifications and past experiences that are relevant to this project (1,000 words maximum)

Please be sure to address the following in your response:

  • Previous experience with designing and fabricating public installations
  • Previous experience with leading and/or participating in effective and accessible community engagement processes
  • Current resume or CV (curriculum vitae)
  • Three references – names and contact information for at least 3 relevant creative/professional references
  • Images and descriptions of at least 3 projects that are similar in style to the type of project/process that you are proposing
  • If you are planning to collaborate with another person(s) on this project, please explain their role on the project and include their name(s), contact info, and provide at least one representative completed work from their portfolio(s)
    • Artist Statement (500 words)
    • Bio (250 words)
    • Statement of Identity (500 words, optional): In keeping with our organization’s core values, ECA supports artists from historically underrepresented and marginalized groups of people. If you wish, please share any additional information about your racial, ethnic, gender and/or cultural identity. 
    • What is your relationship to Easthampton and/or to the New City neighborhood? Please describe a bit of your personal story and connection to Easthampton. (250 words)
    • If you have previously presented your work in Easthampton before, please describe your past project/s. (250 words)
    • If you have never presented your work in Easthampton before, please let us know why you would like to create and share your work in Easthampton at this time. (250 words)


September 20 – RFP is announced

October 10 @ 5:30pm – Application information session via Google Meet. Attendance is recommended but not required to submit an application. 

November 1 @ 5pm – Application Deadline

November 8 – Application review

November 15 – Applicants are notified and contract is issued to selected artist/designer

November 29 – Contracts finalized and returned

December through February – Artist/Designer will conduct and/or implement:

  • Historical and environmental research
  • Regular communication and collaboration with the City Project Team
  • Engage neighborhood residents and community members to generate input
  • Any additional developmental components that are relevant to their particular project
  • Begin to craft preliminary design, based on the above information

March 4 – DRAFT of Design Plan is due

March 18 – REVISION of Design Plan, with feedback from City Project Team. DRAFT conceptual renderings due.

April 1 – DRAFT cost estimate for fabrication & install of conceptual Design Plan 

April 1-30 – Ongoing dialogue with City Project Team to finalize the above bolded deliverables

April 30 – Final schematic design/plan, conceptual renderings, and cost estimates due

ECA Mission & Core Values

Easthampton City Arts (ECA) is a city organization that creates positive, innovative, and accessible arts programming and cultural events to generate and increase opportunities for artists and the local economy. ECA’s core values are to: 

  1.         CULTIVATE a welcoming, supportive, and inclusive environment for ECA artists and the greater public;
  1.         PARTNER with local businesses and community organizations to create dynamic, integrated arts and cultural programming to activate downtown Easthampton and beyond;
  1.         WORK IN COMMUNITY to secure funding and resources to support local artists;
  1.         EMBRACE the rich history of greater Easthampton and the social and cultural diversity of our community;
  1.         PROVIDE free, affordable, and accessible programming for people of all ages.

 *For more information about Easthampton City Arts, please visit

Artist Agreements

The selected individual must comply with program guidelines. As with all ECA & City programs, the individual can submit invoices once they have fulfilled the requirements of their agreement. Please note that a W9 is required for payment to be issued and checks can be expected to arrive approximately 4-5 weeks after paperwork has been processed.


Please direct all inquiries regarding this open call for public art to Pasqualina Azzarello, Easthampton City Arts Program Director: *Please note that inquiries must be received by the end of day Wednesday October 25, 2023 to ensure a timely response ahead of the application deadline.