North Shore Community Development Coalition and YouthBuild North Shore collaborated with artist Ruben Ubiera on a public art installation. Ubiera is a renowned artist who has been commissioned for murals and other large-scale public art installations around nation. He worked with bright colors and detailed designs to create a Postgraffism or urban-pop styled piece on the crosswalk between Dodge Street and Peabody Street. Originally from the Dominican Republic, his family moved to Salem when they immigrated to the United States in the 1990’s. A former resident of the Point neighborhood and a graduate from Salem High School, this is Ubiera's first installation in Salem. Ubiera now resides in South Florida.
The goal of the crosswalk project was to add a creative feature piece to downtown Salem that allows people to stop and enjoy the rich history and culture of the city. The YB students assisted him with creating the Cross Walk Mural in which 3 of them have been featured as caricatures on the crosswalk.
The crosswalk installation is funded by Mass Development’s Transformative Development Initiative, a competitive grant program which invests in Massachusetts’ Gateway Cities. North Shore CDC collaborated with The City of Salem and the Point Neighborhood Association to complete the application. This effort is in response to the Point Neighborhood Vision & Action Plan, a plan created by the same partners in 2013 to improve the quality of life and bring investment to the Point neighborhood.
"The crosswalk installation will be a unique addition to Salem’s downtown streetscape and a creative way of engaging residents in a conversation about our rich heritage and diversity” said Rosario Ubiera-Minaya, North Shore CDC’s Chief Program Officer.
North Shore CDC sees the project as part of its mission of investing in neighborhoods to create thriving communities, as it celebrates the Salem Point Neighborhood through artistic expression.