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July 2, 2014

PICTURE PERFECT: Sculptural bike racks installed in downtown Jeffersonville

Sculptures have place to rest your head for photo opps

JEFFERSONVILLE — The city’s first sculptural bike racks are in the ground, and their use is threefold.

Dawn Spyker, member of the Jeffersonville Public Arts Commission, said the four structures are not only for securing bikes and adding art to the downtown streetscape, they’re for photo opps, too. Each sculpture that represents a family member has a place to rest your chin as you stand behind to have your picture taken.

“I think people will enjoy interacting with them,” Spyker said of the sculptures along the side of Red Yeti Brewing Co. on West Chestnut Street.

Steel Creations general manager Shaun Ludwick designed the four sculptures based on a drawing he rendered of one rack a few years ago.

Each structure has a different color which represents a father, teenage daughter, mother and young son.

“Hopefully they’ll stay there forever,” Ludwick said.

The structures are the first of Jeffersonville’s permanent and artistic bike racks in its effort to gain the League of American Bicyclists’ designation as a bicycle friendly community.

Shane Corbin, planning and zoning director, said five more racks will be scattered throughout the city and are possible through a $15,000 grant from a Clark County initiative called Growing Healthy Lives.

The grant also pays for bike repair stations, the first that went in at the Jeffersonville Overlook.

Nathan Samuel, councilman at-large and head of the Arts Commission, said it’s worth it for the city to go the “extra mile” in transforming bike racks to art.

“When people come down and visit Jeff, whether it’s walking or whether it’s just driving, it’s important for us to make a good first impression,” Samuel said. “The details matter ... We want to put our best foot forward and look as unique as possible.”

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