Calgary city council has rejected a request to take a look at its public art policy.
The request was rejected by a vote of 10 to five Monday, after a the majority of alderman rejected the idea of a possible tiered system that would deliver less than one per cent of construction budgets to art, Ald. Brian Pincott backed the existing policy, saying the city’s public art policy has been reviewed several times before.
"A lot of this work has been done," he said. "To look at a tiered process takes away from where the real value of one per cent for public art lies, in the larger projects, where we get it in all the communities."
In 2004, the city created a policy calling for one per cent of the value of a capital project to be spent on public art.
A policy review was backed by Ald. Shane Keating, who suggested the policy can result in too much spending on public art when it comes to major projects like an LRT line.
Keating said he's not against public art, but he questions if that level of spending is appropriate on large-budget projects.
Ald. Druh Farrel said any debate over the one per cent policy is now over.
"This policy is too fragile to review once again because it’s too political," she said. "It seems in a way like political opportunism to keep the debate going."
The policy has been reviewed three times in the program’s eight-year history.