AMESBURY — The city is putting out a call for artists to make a semi-permanent mark on the downtown this spring.

The city received a $38,316.50 Shared Streets & Spaces grant from the State Department of Transportation earlier this year.

Although most of the grant money has been set aside to reinvigorate the Upper Millyard / amphitheater area, Mayor Kassandra Gove has also been working with the Amesbury Cultural Council to bring more attention to the city's eight downtown crosswalks.

The Cultural Council was behind painting murals on nine city electrical boxes and the drop box at City Hall last summer and is now looking to do the same for downtown crosswalks.

"This is a great way to celebrate the artist community in town and show them off in a different way," Gove said. "This is something unique for our community."

She said the painted crosswalks are an excellent wayfinding opportunity for the city and its businesses.

"It creates a sense of place and defines the downtown area," Gove said. "It would also be a safety mechanism for drivers. They will be able to see them a little better. It'll be very obvious that there is a pedestrian walkway there and we are looking forward to receiving the artists' designs."

The crosswalks are at the corner of Water Street and Elm Street; Elm Street at Market Square; Market Street at Market Square; High Street at Market Square; Market Square at Friend Street; in front of Willie Jo & Woodie's and Toy Soldier Games; in front of the Public Library; and in front of City Hall.

A call for artists as well as crosswalk specifications can be found at www.amesburyculturalcouncil.org/public-art-initiatives.

The names of artists who are selected will be announced next month and the crosswalks are expected to be painted in May.

Crosswalk installations are expected to take place during the weekends of May 1-2, May 8-9 and May 15-16 and the finished products are expected to remain for the next 2-5 years.

Applications are due on April 2 and the Cultural Council is expected to make its selection and notify the artists by April 12.

Artists with questions can contact Stephanie Martin at stephanieferry75@gmail.com.

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