The collaboration between the RTC of Southern Nevada and local artist Ashley Hairston Doughty was made possible by Smart Growth America’s Arts and Transportation Rapid Response initiative. - Mikayla Whitmore

The collaboration between the RTC of Southern Nevada and local artist Ashley Hairston Doughty was made possible by Smart Growth America’s Arts and Transportation Rapid Response initiative.

Mikayla Whitmore

“A wave is as good as a smile” and “Your nostrils are showing” are two of about a dozen reminders that customers now see at the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada’s (RTC) Bonneville Transit Center (BTC) in downtown Las Vegas.

As one of five recipients of Smart Growth America’s Arts and Transportation Rapid Response initiative earlier this year, the RTC collaborated with local artist Ashley Hairston Doughty to design artwork and signage in English and Spanish focused on COVID-19 safety protocols such as social distancing, wearing a face covering, and washing hands frequently.

Amid the public health crisis brought on by COVID-19, transportation agencies across the country face challenges in continuing to provide transportation service while maintaining a focus on COVID-related safety measures. Smart Growth America’s initiative sees artists as unique partners to help solve these challenges.

“This is a great partnership that uses art to help bring to life critically needed safety messages that serve as a reminder to our transit riders on how to stay healthy and safe during this pandemic,” said MJ Maynard, RTC’s CEO. “This project allows us to support local artists while having the potential to brighten the outlook for our passengers during these times of uncertainty.”

Chosen by Smart Growth America, Doughty is a visual storyteller who explains personal experiences through verbal and visual language and recently hosted her first solo exhibition “Kept to Myself” at the Barrick Museum of Art on the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) campus.

As the RTC’s main transit hub, the BTC connects thousands of passengers who rely on public transportation to work and essential services.

Smart Growth America’s Arts and Transportation Rapid Response funding is provided by the Kresge Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Take a look at the artwork and signage from the collaboration.

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