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RFP - Public Plaza Naming

Issue Date     April 1, 2019
Deadline     May 22, 2019

The City of Lancaster is soliciting proposals for the naming of a new public plaza to be developed on the east side of North Queen Street between Orange and Chestnut Streets, a portion of what used to be called Lancaster Square. As noted in Lancaster’s Ten-Year Plan For Public Art, this is “a prominent location ... poised to capture people’s imagination.”  Upon completion, this project will “solidify Lancaster’s reputation as a creative, welcoming city” (Ten-Year Plan For Public Art, page 6).

The City seeks a name that honors Lancaster’s heritage, while also speaking to a future that celebrates our rich diversity. It should inspire a meaningful and relevant public art installation that will magnify Lancaster’s sense of place.

About The New Plaza

The new public plaza will be bordered by a hotel and restaurant now standing and future developments including: restaurant, retail, office and living space as well as Lancaster Public Library and a new parking garage. Its sister plaza, Binns Park, is located directly across the street and will be connected by a prominent pedestrian-centered walkway. In addition, there will be a covered passage from the plaza to Christian Street providing new access to Marion Street by foot, bike or skate.

Centrally located, and easily accessible from every part of the City, the new public plaza will provide a place where all members of our city’s richly diverse community can gather and realize ownership. There will be spaces for play, ample seating, areas that can serve as stages for performance and likely a screen for outdoor movies.

A series of community input sessions conducted in 2018 indicated a broad desire for this plaza to feature public art, in alignment with the City’s stated goal that Lancaster Public Art should “take the lead... in the development of arts programs, public art, and placemaking projects” at this location (Ten Year Plan For Public Art, page 6). Accordingly, the namesake should serve as inspiration for the creation and development of future artwork.


This opportunity is open to all residents of Lancaster City. Applicants must be 18 years or older.


- Proposals honoring living individuals will not be considered.

- Proposals must show substantial local support from constituents across the city in the form of a petition, letters of support, polls and/or other materials.

- Applicants should familiarize themselves with  Chapter 112, Article I of the City of Lancaster Code, Naming of Public Facilities and Lancaster Public Art’s Ten-Year Plan

- Proposals for public art will not be considered at this time.

Additional Information

- A plaque will be placed in the plaza recognizing the namesake and provide additional information. The plaque will be roughly 22” x 28” and will be placed on a prominent building facade within the plaza. Cost of the plaque including design and fabrication will be covered by the City. Selected applicant will be expected to help provide content.

Submission Requirements

Proposal submissions should include the following:

1. Background Information (750 words max. / may submit up to 5 photos or video)

What is you / your organization’s connection to Lancaster City? What name are you proposing? How does the name honor Lancaster’s heritage, while speaking to a future that celebrates our rich diversity? If the proposal is in honor of a notable person, include biographical information.

2. Relevance (350 words max.)

The name should be derived from an inspiring figure, event, or concept. How is the name relevant to the site and the history of Lancaster Square? How does it play into our city’s story of diversity and inclusion? How does it fit with the future uses of the plaza?

3. Public Art  (350 words max.)

How does this name support the City’s goal of inspiring meaningful public art at this location? Please do not propose an artwork. Refer to the Lancaster Public Art Ten-Year Plan to provide an understanding of of the current objectives of Lancaster Public Art and how they correlate to the suggested name.

4. Documentation of Community Support  

Evidence of substantial local support from constituents across the city in the form of a petition, letters of support, polls and/or other materials.

Evaluation Criteria

Proposal will be selected based on the following:

- Relevance to the site’s history and future, while acknowledging and celebrating Lancaster’s rich cultural heritage and diversity;

- understanding of the vision and objectives for the new plaza;

- broad support among the many different constituencies throughout the Lancaster City; and

- potential to inspire.

Selection Process

1. Submissions that arrive on or before the deadline and meet all submission requirements will be reviewed by a committee of the Public Art Advisory Board.

2. Three applicants will be selected as finalists the week of May 27, 2019. All applicants notified.

3. Finalists present to the Public Art Advisory Board on June 10, 2019 at 5pm

4. Finalists will be notified of the selection by June 14, 2019

5. Selected applicant will present to City Council at their Public Works Committee meeting for final approval on June 25, 2019 at 6pm


May 22, 2019, 5pm EST. Late applications will not be reviewed.

Or email/mail to:

Joanna Davis, Public Art Manager
City of Lancaster
120 North Duke Street
Lancaster, PA 17603