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The Aurora Highlands’ Public Art Park Wins CBCA Award

Asclepius by Hunter Brown

The Aurora Highlands is to be honored by the Colorado Business Committee for the Arts CBCA) for the master-planned community’s public art park, Hogan Park at Highlands Creek. The Aurora Highlands will be honored for this achievement during the 2024 Business for the Arts Awards on March 12. 

The two-mile-long public art park, which currently features a collection of almost twenty works by four artists from around the world, is a bold stride towards enriching the cultural tapestry of The Aurora Highlands, the City of Aurora, and Colorado as a whole. It is an embodiment of the community’s commitment to creating a space where art is not just seen but experienced freely and openly by all.  

Carla Ferreira, the community’s principal and director of onsite development, has spearheaded the integration of art into the heart of Aurora with passion and vision.  

“Art nurtures the spirit of our community, and it has been my mission to curate experiences that resonate with and inspire everyone who visits The Aurora Highlands,” Ferreira said. “This award is not just an honor, it is a testament to the belief that public art acts as a community’s soul, reflecting and enhancing the beauty, diversity and vibrancy of our shared spaces.” 

The park’s most recent installation, a 21-foot-tall sculpture called “Umi” by South African artist Daniel Popper, has gained international attention both online and with the media, drawing visitors from all over the country. Umi joined other pieces of original art within Hogan Park at Highlands Creek, including work from contemporary artists like Olivia Steele, Hunter Brown and Lisa Solberg.  

The Aurora Highlands has also partnered with the global initiative “Statues for Equality” to install a statue in the spring commemorating Justina Laurena Ford, the first licensed Black female doctor in Denver. When the park is complete, a total of about 30 works of art will call Hogan Park at Highlands Creek home. The Aurora Highlands has already transcended the initial public art budget of 1.2 million dollars, signaling a deep-seated commitment to cultural investment within the city of Aurora. 

“Public art enhances our public spaces, anchors our local gathering places and supports local business development, offering memorable one-of-a-kind experiences,” Aurora Mayor Mike Coffman said. “This award is a recognition of the importance of public art as one of the crucial elements that make our city a desirable place to live, visit and grow a business by transforming public spaces into vibrant culturally rich environments.”  

The CBCA has been a stalwart advocate for the integration of arts in Colorado’s business communities, highlighting art as an essential element of the regional economy. Hogan Park at Highlands Creek’s distinction as a 2024 honoree underlines the success of The Aurora Highlands in not just meeting but surpassing the city of Aurora’s public art requirement for Metropolitan District developers. 

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