Here’s why you’ll start seeing a bigger focus on art at MARTA stations

MARTA has launched a new program that will integrate and restore art throughout the rail system.

The new commitment will engage with customers in a “bold, exciting and often entertaining new way,” general manager and CEO Keith Parker said in a statement.

“From mosaics to murals, we are redefining the ridership experience here at MARTA,” he said.

The Artbound initiative is a result of a 2016 Board of Directors vote to invest in art to improve the customer experience.

One percent of the annual budget — beginning with the 2017 fiscal year — will be allocated for art-related programs, community activities and restoration projects, according to a news release. In May 2016, MARTA's proposed budget for 2017 was $453.3 million.

Late last year, MARTA hired Arts Administrator Katherine Dirga to curate and oversee the program.

The approach is to install high-quality pieces that reflect “the vibrancy and history of the community,” the former Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport’s arts program manager said.

The program launched with an event at Five Points station Monday afternoon. It included  performances from Moving in the Spirit dance company and cellist Jenn Cornell with drummer Emrah Kotan.

A new logo was also unveiled.

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