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Office of Economic Development
Office of Economic Development



Pictures from the September 27, 2008 Opening Celebration 

Ohlone Dancer 

Ohlone Dancer


Michele Silva & Chiori Santiago   Wavey Gravey  Artist John Wehrle

Michele Seville, Civic Arts Coordinator for the
City of Richmond & Chiori Santiago, Late
Civic ARts Commissioner

Wavey Gravey

John Wehrle, Artist


 Betsy Davis, Poet

Betsy Davis, Poet



Previous Shots

   WB Station Dancers      

J. Wehrle   womanfig


                  (Artist John Wehrle's dancing figures installed at the Rail Stop)                   

WB Station Mural


WB Station Poems

July 25, 2006 Site Visit
August 29, 2006 Site Visit
December 1, 2006 Site Visit 

  Artist John Wehrle Chosen for 
The West Berkeley Rail Stop and Transit Plaza Public Art Project 

The Selection Panel for the City of Berkeley Public Art Program is pleased to announce that John Wehrle has been chosen as the artist for the West Berkeley Rail Stop and Transit Plaza Project. Mr. Wehrle is a noted muralist whose murals can be seen throughout the Bay Area, around Los Angeles and on his website, www.troutinhand.com  

The West Berkeley Rail Stop is located in the heart of West Berkeley and adjacent to the popular Fourth Street commercial district. The site is under the University Avenue overpass  on University Avenue between Fourth and Third Streets. This project is a partnership between the Berkeley Redevelopment Agency and the Civic Arts Public Art Program of the Berkeley Civic Art Commission. 

Artist John Wehrle’s proposal is to unify the space under the University Avenue overpass by combining painting and poetry.  Wehrle will paint the seventeen columns in the parking area leading to the train stop and will create a mural that will be placed on the east wall. A poem by Betsy Davids, poet, will be written on the concrete beams above the columns, which according to Wehrle “refers to a journey, departing, and arriving.”

As stated in the original call for artists, this public art project aspires to create a welcoming and friendly entrance into the West Berkeley Rail Stop and to enhance the commercial and  new residential development in the vicinity. The original environment and the native peoples were to be a prominent part of this project. The West Berkeley Rail Stop call for artists was sent out last spring with seventeen applicants responding to it.  Artists in all nine Bay Area Counties were eligible to apply. 

A selection panel met in the fall of this year and chose three finalists. The finalists each then created a model of their concept and the three models were on public view on the first floor of the Martin Luther King Civic Center for three weeks. During this time written public comment was collected and given to the selection panel for their consideration. In February 2006, a second meeting was held where the three finalists presented their proposals to the selection panel.  The selection panel was composed of a member from the Civic Arts Commission, an experienced public artist, a mural artist, members of the business community, a neighborhood community church pastor, a representative of the West Berkeley Project Area Committee  (PAC), and the project architect. The Chair of the Civic Arts Commission, a representative of the Berkeley Redevelopment Agency, and Chair of the Civic Arts Commission's Public Art Committee served as non-voting advisors.

The funding for this project is from a 1.5% public art allocation from the City of Berkeley Redevelopment Agency.  The amount of the total commission for the proposed artwork is $43, 750.  This project is to represent the local history and environment including the Ohlone Indian settlements.

For more information on this public art project please visit iCoBWEB or contact Mary Ann Merker, Civic Arts Coordinator, via Email or telephone at 510-981-7533. 

 Call for Artists: West Berkeley Rail Stop and Transit Plaza (pdf)

Artist Award Press Release (pdf)


Return to Public Art Program

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