Tunnel Art Project Comes to Fruition

Detail of planned mural  |  photo from All Our Children United  |  post by Susan Shea

After two years of planning, consultations and negotiations with the County of Marin and CalTrans and raising the necessary funds, the project to clean, beautify, and enhance the experience of moving through the tunnel that connects Marin City and Sausalito is underway.

Major grants from the Marin Community Foundation, private civic foundations, the Marin County Service Fund, and the City of Sausalito, as well as gifts from individuals, raised the $105,000 budget required to carry out the project. Galilee Harbor resident and artist Raylene Gorum, an award-winning site-specific artist, is the designer of the abstract mural.

Final approvals have been confirmed by Marin’s Department of Public Works, which submitted the proposal to CalTrans on behalf of All Our Children United, the non-profit which is overseeing the project. Members of the steering committee have posted images of the projected final work in and around the tunnel and in Sausalito and Marin City, in part to encourage passersby to help keep the surfaces clean while the preparation begins.

The walls have been prepared, with base coats of a neutral color approved by CalTrans covering the major vertical areas. The mural painting will begin later this week with the “sunrise to sunset” band of colors that will stretch the length of the tunnel. Once those bands of color have been applied. Gorum and her assistants will paint hundreds of bright blue handprints symbolizing the children of both communities and their positive spirit.

On November 19, the entire community—Marin City, Sausalito, and local officials—are invited to join in celebration of this unique moment with a gathering from 1 to 3 p.m. on the Marin City side of the tunnel and to participate by joining a musical parade through the new art-enhanced connection point between the communities.

The five-person volunteer steering committee that promised to see the project through is made up of: Sonja Hanson, Sausalito Foundation, which serves as the project’s 501(c)(3) fiscal agent; Felecia Gaston, head of Marin Performing Stars of Marin City; Carolyn Revelle, Sausalito Beautiful past-president; Shirley Thornton, board member Arts + Scholars; and Susan C Shea, former Sausalito resident and non-profit fundraiser.