Destination Crenshaw is a reparative development, open-air museum project and one of the largest black public art projects in the U.S. This project will commission more than 100 works by black artists who have strong ties to the Los Angeles community, creating a pipeline of work and jobs for emerging, seasoned and internationally renowned artists. This is a cultural black stamp on Crenshaw Boulevard, comparable to those in Chinatown, Mariachi Plaza, Koreatown and other local ethnic enclaves.
Building America CDE, Inc., a subsidiary of the AFL-CIO Housing Investment Trust allocated $8 million of New Markets Tax Credits to the $77 million development and execution of Destination Crenshaw in Crenshaw, South Los Angeles, California. The community-led project has five central components: a culturally stamped infrastructure project, a transformative union training and employment program, a local small business resiliency program, environmental equity, and a black artist job program. This unprecedented approach to protect and revitalize the community of Crenshaw will take pedestrians through the business district to support its revival and restore the eco-system of South Los Angeles through the creation of safe, healthy, and vibrant spaces that facilitate economic security and entrepreneurship for Black residents. The business will fund the construction of Sankofa Park and the programming that takes place in the park. Sankofa Park is named after the traditional African symbol of a bird mid-flight. It will be the first park completed as part of the Destination Crenshaw public art and environmental revitalization project. Sankofa Park will be 40,000 sq. ft. and add green space to the area. It will feature art installations from prominent Black artists including Kehinde Wiley, Maren Hassinger, Artist Lane and Charles Dickson.
The core work intends to counter the negative effects of the LAX/Crenshaw transit line caused by restoring the eco-system of South Los Angeles through the creation of safe, healthy, and vibrant spaces that facilitate economic security and entrepreneurship for Black residents.
To advance racial and spatial justice, the park will increase equitable access to parks/open space and include pavers creating walkable sidewalks, landscaping, shade structures, bike lanes and safety improvements. Over 100 local artists commissioned to create public art installations and murals that celebrate Black cultural narratives. Over 800 new trees and ten “pocket parks” will make up 30,000 sq. ft. of sustainable landscaping. 70% local hiring requirement and an apprentice program aim to help sustain over 40 local small businesses and nonprofits and create over 40 permanent jobs and over 600 construction jobs