The big utility box in the garden had us baffled for most of the year. Who owned it? The electric company? We talked to an employee there who told us, wrongly, that the box belonged to the electric company and we could not turn it into a piece of art as the Public Art Foundation wants us to do. (There's a digital rendering of our proposal here.) Almost a dead end.
Then Bob, who has done a lot of building in Des Moines and therefore knows lots of people in city government and the utility companies, came out to the circle, wrote down the serial number of the electricity meter (top center-left above) and called his contact at the electric company who checked the records and told us that the electric bill goes to the public-water company. So, we called the right person at the water works, he came out to the circle to look at the box and make sure our proposal would not harm the box or compromise its workings, and... halleluah! He said "no problem," go ahead. Okay, we have the photographs, we have the company (Beeline and Blue) that will print them on adhesive-backed vinyl and adhere them to the box. But we have to wait for Spring and warmer temperatures to have the photos adhered. We've chased this dream a long time, we can wait another four months. I am plenty excited. My photographs will be BIG, and a lot of people will see them. I hope that this project will inspire other neighborhoods. More about that later.