Parks and Recreation advisory board had urged that another site be found
By The Associated Press
The sculpture garden in Halley Park proposed by the nonprofit First Nations Sculpture Garden Corp. will feature bronze statues of four prominent 20th century Native Americans: Charles Eastman, a physician who witnessed the Wounded Knee massacre; Black Elk, an Oglala holy man who was born and raised at Pine Ridge; artist Oscar Howe; and author Vine Deloria Jr.
Construction is to begin within three years, according to the Rapid City Journal.
The garden will be flanked by two of the city’s busiest roadways, raising concerns about traffic safety and available parking.
The city’s Parks and Recreation Advisory Board in July narrowly rejected the plan, urging First Nations to work with city staff to find a more suitable location. First Nations officials maintained the park probably will not draw heavy foot traffic, and the city’s Public Works Committee last week narrowly recommended approval.
“This project is not meant to be obtrusive,” project coordinator Elizabeth Cook-Lynn said. “It’s an art-history project. It has nothing to do with politics. It has nothing to do with religion. We don’t want to dig up old animosities.