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Mayor Bowser Releases First-Ever DC Cultural Plan to Invest in and Strengthen Local Art Communities

Thursday, April 4, 2019

(Washington, DC) – Today, Mayor Muriel Bowser released the District’s first-ever Cultural Plan. The Cultural Plan outlines 23 policies and eight investment recommendations to address issues of affordability, access, and sustainability and to strengthen the people, places, communities, and ideas that define Washington, DC.

“Washington, DC is a diverse and inclusive city with a thriving creative economy – one that we are committed to supporting by investing in and strengthening our arts and culture scenes,” said Mayor Bowser. “The DC Cultural Plan will help us leverage the resources, passion, and talents that already exist across all eight wards to protect and expand cultural and creative opportunities in our city.”

Mayor Bowser’s Fiscal Year 2020 budget proposal invests in several of the Cultural Plan’s recommendations for first-year implementation, including establishing a new Cultural Facilities Fund, a new Innovation and Entrepreneurship Loan Fund, a Public Space Security Fund, and a new Center for Cultural Opportunities to provide business development-related resources and trainings.

The Cultural Plan’s recommendations focus on five categories:

  • Cultural Creators
  • Cultural Spaces
  • Cultural Consumers
  • Convergence
  • Cultural Investment

The Cultural Plan was initiated by the DC Council through the Cultural Plan for the District Act of 2015, which directed the DC Office of Planning (OP) to develop the Plan in consultation with the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities and the DC Office of Cable Television, Film, Music and Entertainment (OCTFME) with support from an interdisciplinary consulting team. Throughout the planning process, more than 1,500 community members and cultural stakeholders provided input that informed the Plan’s strategies and recommendations. The Cultural Plan establishes a framework to inclusively grow the District’s cultural community informed by the Office of Planning’s experience in community development, land use, systems planning, public facilities and infrastructure. This Plan’s implementation will be guided by the multi-sector Implementation Steering Committee required by the Cultural Plan for the District Act of 2015. The Mayor will work in collaboration with the Steering Committee to develop partnerships and initiatives to realize the Plan’s vision for building cultural equity.

Mayor Bowser was joined by CAH Executive Director Terrie Rouse-Rosario, OP Director Andrew Trueblood, and OCTFME Director Angie Gates.

The DC Cultural Plan is available online at www.dcculturalplan.org.