Musicians visible in windows in a loft building plan rendering

Creative Placemaking

Creative placemaking projects help to transform communities into lively, beautiful, and resilient places with the arts at their core. Creative placemaking is when artists, arts organizations, and community development practitioners deliberately integrate arts and culture into community revitalization work - placing arts at the table with land-use, transportation, economic development, education, housing, infrastructure, and public safety strategies. Creative placemaking supports local efforts to enhance quality of life and opportunity for existing residents, increase creative activity, and create a distinct sense of place.

Our Town is the National Endowment for the Arts’ creative placemaking grant program. Exploring Our Town features 78 case studies of Our Town-funded projects.

Creative placemaking integrates arts, culture, and design activities into efforts that strengthen communities. Creative placemaking requires partnership across sectors and helps to advance local economic, physical, social, and/or systems change.

Arts, culture, and design activities can help to:

  • Bring new attention to or elevate key community assets and issues, voices of residents, local history, or cultural infrastructure.
  • Inject new or additional energy, resources, activity, people, or enthusiasm into a place, community issue, or local economy.
  • Envision new possibilities for a community or place - a new future, a new way of overcoming a challenge, or approaching problem-solving.
  • Connect communities, people, places, and economic opportunity via physical spaces or new relationships.

Creative Placemaking Resources | Field Partners