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Virginia Beach parking meters are about to get a lot prettier

Ten artists were commissioned by the ViBe Creative District to paint 50 parking meters on 19th Street.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — New art is coming to Virginia Beach thanks to the ViBe Creative District and 10 commissioned artists. 

The creative district announced Tuesday that 10 artists will be painting 50 of the parking meters on 19th Street beginning July 9. 

You can head to 19th Street between Parks Ave. and Arctic Ave. this weekend and watch the artists paint the meters live.

"The parking meters line the street connecting four blocks between the Virginia Beach Convention Center to the Virginia Beach Oceanfront in a unique and engaging manner that showcases the talents of local creatives. It’s the perfect pairing of fun and function," said Kate Pittman, executive director of the ViBe Creative District nonprofit.

In 2020, around 50 standard gray meters were added, and now, artists plan to transform them with new colors and imagery. 

“This project has been in the works for several years as a creative placemaking tool to further distinguish 19th St as the primary corridor in the arts district,” said Pittman.

Nina Goodale, Virginia Beach's Public Art and Placemaking Coordinator says the painted parking meters are a small part of a bigger movement to spread public art all across Hampton Roads.

“When you look at Virginia Beach and cities and communities across the country, where you see art you see economic development and community building follow in tow,” said Goodale.

Each of the artists will paint four to five meters this weekend. Of 31 artists who applied for the project, the following 10 were selected:

  • John Austin, Virginia Beach
  • Mackenzie Gang, Virginia Beach
  • Daniel Goodman, Richmond
  • Kiera Gregg, Virginia Beach
  • Chris Jones, Virginia Beach
  • Summer Paradiso, Virginia Beach
  • Eva Rovillos, Virginia Beach
  • Carla Ryan, Virginia Beach
  • Corinna Sayward, Virginia Beach
  • Kelsey Witt, Norfolk

Some of the planned designs are at the top of this story. You can also find a design from Keira Gregg below. 

Credit: ViBe Creative District

The meters will remain fully functional pay-to-park kiosks, and the creative district plans to rotate the parking meter murals every one to three years, depending on how well the paint lasts. 

Similar projects involving painted meters can be found across the U.S. and the world including in Philadelphia and Dubai. 

Should the weather hold up, artists will paint the meters on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. The public is welcome to head out and watch the painters work. 

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