City of

District 16

Alder Michael J. Tierney

Image of Alder Michael J. Tierney

Alder Michael J. Tierney

Contact Information

Home Address:

4534 Secret Garden Dr
McFarland , WI 53558

Council Office

Common Council Office:
210 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd
Room 417
Madison, WI 53703
Phone: (608) 266-4071
Fax: (608) 267-8669
WI Relay Service

Alder Tierney’s Updates

Thinking of adding poetry to sidewalks in your neighborhood?

February 21, 2017 4:57 PM

City of Madison Sidewalk Poetry Program


As part of the City's effort to incorporate art into public works projects, the City may print poems

in city sidewalks during street reconstruction projects. The purpose of this program is to

enhance the city's pedestrian experience and encourage neighborhood place making. Under

this program, the City decides whether to place any poetry in sidewalks and controls the content

of poetry placed in the sidewalks. The City is not opening up the physical structure of the city's

sidewalks as a forum for public expression.

Poem Selection

Poems used in this sidewalk poetry program shall be selected by the Madison Arts Commission

(MAC) following a public meeting, subject to the following guidelines:

1. Selected poems must be written by a City of Madison Poet Laureate.

2. Selected poems may not contain religious content or commercial, political, hate, or

public issue speech.

3. Selected poems may not be obscene or contain profanity.

4. Selected poems may contain only text (no images).

5. Selected poems may be no longer than 10 lines in length with up to 40 characters per

line including spaces. Poems may be no more than 250 characters total including titles,

spaces, and punctuations.

Poem Placement

When the City decides to print poems in sidewalks during a street reconstruction project, the

City Engineering Department will provide MAC with the specific location of sidewalk panels

available for imprintation. From those panels, MAC will select the specific location for the

poems. Poems shall not be placed in sidewalks immediately adjacent to a property if the owner

of that property objects to such placement.

Public Meeting

Prior to selecting poems, MAC shall place the item on the agenda of one of its regular public

meetings so that neighborhood feedback regarding poem selection and placement may be


The City retains final authority over poem selection and placement.

Removal of Sidewalk Poetry

The City reserves the right to remove any sidewalk panel stamped with poetry at any time and

for any reason.

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