Public art sprucing up vacant Valley businesses

TEMPE, AZ - It's a bright spot in a dim economy, as local artists help to change the face of failing businesses.

You may have seen some of these art installations in Tempe. They're also popping up in Scottsdale.

It's a chance to showcase local artists, but also the empty buildings that house them.

Over the past five years more and more "for lease" signs have been going up and an empty store front doesn't help neighboring businesses trying to hang on.

The In Flux project is trying to change that by turning those empty stores into a display case for local artists.

It means exposure for them, and hopefully it will turn the head of a potential new tenant for the building.

And until it does, people passing by say it makes for a less depressing view.

Richard Gehrke works near some of the art displays.

"You see people stopping and looking, gathering around taking pictures," Gehrke said. "It definitely invigorated the area."

Starting next month In Flux will recruit more artists for the next cycle of projects in Scottsdale, Tempe, Chandler, Glendale and Phoenix.

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