The San Jose City Council has approved $500,000 for the re-installation of a popular public art piece that racked up more than a million social media posts in the four months that it was installed near San Jose City Hall.
The Sonic Runway is celebrated as one of San Jose’s most popular pieces of recent art.
“We had photo shoots there, we had dance parties, we had a marriage proposal,” said Adams Hapner, the cultural affairs director of San Jose.
Many residents agreed. “That’s awesome, that sounds great,” said San Jose State student Emanuel Jacobo. “I think it activates the space. It brings people to a plaza that’s empty lately.”
The price, though, has raised concerns for some residents who think the money would be better spent elsewhere. Angel Enriquez, a Santa Clara resident, suggested that the city could use that money for children’s programs instead.
Mayor Sam Liccardo explained the half-million-dollar price tag. “This is something that’s going to be permanent or at least something that’s going to be there for several years, it’s going to be outside, so that means you have to build it well,” he said. “It can’t be cheap, it can’t be flimsy.”
The current plan is to have the Sonic Runway up for about seven years if it stays popular and can withstand the elements for that long.