Cultural Mapping

Arts and cultural activities contribute to the vitality of neighborhoods by creating shared spaces, stimulating community-based economic opportunities, and transforming the physical and emotional notions of place. As Baltimore’s communities, growth, and economy are increasingly tied to arts and culture, a mapping tool to track related data has become essential to bettering the city’s future.

About the Tool

As the project manager, BNIA-JFI supports the development of the cultural mapping tool by collecting and analyzing arts and culture data in a common, centralized measurement system. By establishing a system for mapping and correlating arts and culture data, an interactive, web-based, and publicly-accessible cultural mapping tool will:

  • demonstrate the impact of the arts and creative placemaking throughout Baltimore;
  • allow residents, organizations, and other stakeholders to strategically and effectively foster new ways of improving the city and its neighborhoods over time;
  • allow users to tangibly determine how to more equitably distribute resources; and
  • heighten awareness of art in neighborhoods among cultural institutions, businesses, and elected officials.

Data Collection

In order to best capture the dynamic definitions and states of art and culture in Baltimore, data will be collected from a variety of sources and methodologies that can be tracked and replicated over time. This includes:

  • citywide administrative arts data to track publicly-funded artwork, arts organizations, artistic and cultural activities lists, and arts funding;
  • crowdsourced information and a participation index to collect community-based and local data that has never been agglomerated in an accessible form before; and
  • Vital Signs 14, which will serve as an initial framework for the cultural mapping tool.

We welcome your input to ensure that the data and tool are actionable and beneficial for all stakeholders working to improve vitality in Baltimore’s neighborhoods. If you are interested in taking a survey to help us with our process, please follow this link: 

Follow the link to see the powerpoint from our Arts & Culture Release event on April 20, 2016:


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