Traffic Box Art

Each year the City of Columbia, Missouri invites artists residing in mid-Missouri to apply for a public art project to create art on traffic signal boxes (TSB) in the downtown area within The District. The goal of the project is to decrease the instances of graffiti on these surfaces while making them artful objects. Once addressed by artists, the traffic signal boxes have proven to be very resistant to graffiti and vandalism and contribute significantly to the vitality and attractiveness of the streetscape. To date, the program has been successful in stopping graffiti on these traffic signal boxes. See before and after images and videos of previous Traffic Box Art projects.

Proposals are now being accepted for the 2018 Traffic Box Art project. See application information below. 

Traffic Box Call to Artists


In 2018, the TSB to be addressed is at the corner of Seventh and Cherry Streets, in the heart of downtown. 

Approximate dimensions of the TSB are 48″ H x 21.5″ W x 15″ D.


7th and Cherry Traffic Signal Box

This project is being implemented by the city’s Office of Cultural Affairs (OCA). Applicants should submit a design proposal as well as qualifications (see Selection Process and Application Information).


The Traffic Box Art Program is designed to enhance The District by adding works of art to the downtown streetscape on surfaces that are often targeted by graffiti vandals. Artwork on TSBs functions as a form of communication to a moving audience with the goal of creating a safe, inclusive and interesting urban environment. Successful proposals will foster community pride and convey the sense of the Columbia community. When designing your artwork, think of the vitality of The District and its contribution to the city as a whole, such as arts, music, community events, and special attractions.

The Standing Committee on Public Art will base their selection on the following evaluation criteria:

– Artistic merit
– Effectiveness in abating graffiti (e.g. no large blank or light colored areas)
– Design reflects life in Columbia and the vitality of The District
– Design is appropriate for the specific site in its layout and composition, that is, it may reflect the history, happenings, or architecture of the specific location

The total budget for this project includes an artist honorarium of $1,500 and an allowance for materials of up to $500. The OCA will provide a designated primer and graffiti coat sealant, both of which must be used.


Review the project information, artist eligibility, design criteria, and application instructionsopens in a new window. Submit the online formopens in a new window with all attachments (current resume, two professional references, design proposal(s), written statement for each design).

Download the design templateopens in a new window

If you would prefer to submit a hard copy applicationopens in a new window, send materials to P.O. Box 6015, Columbia, MO, 65205, or deliver in person to our office at 300 S. Providence Rd. Please refer to the instructions for more information. You may also email all application materials to 

Deadline to apply: Friday, March 23, 2018 by 5:00 p.m

CLICK HERE TO APPLYopens in a new window