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Students paint downtown sewer drain covers

Some downtown Springfield sidewalks are more interesting to look at thanks to a project involving OTC art students.

The Storm Drain Reveal Project, sponsored by the James River Basin Partnership, the City of Springfield and the Springfield Regional Arts Council, brought artist and downtown storm drains together to promote water quality protection.

The finished murals will be unveiled at next week’s First Friday Art Walk.

OTC students designed and painted eight of the 10 drains selected for painting. The artist’s ideas surrounding the theme of water quality protection were submitted to a committee of city and basin staff who selected the winners.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for our OTC Fine Art Students to gain experience while informing the community of the connection the storm drains have with our waterways.  They are making a huge aesthetic and environmental impact on the Springfield community,” said Kat Allie, Fine Arts instructor and manager of the OTC Fine Arts Gallery in the Gillioz.

It is a public education project to inform the community on the connection the storm drains have with local waterways. Organizers hope the murals will continue to raise awareness long after the initial planned events. The artwork is expected to last about three years on the sidewalks.

Reproductions of the murals will be displayed in the Canvas Galley on South Avenue during First Friday and during the weekend of ArtsFest where the public will be asked to vote on the People’s Choice award.

Phil Caudle designed his storm drain mural in front of the Springfield Convention Center to show a lake, as it should be, without pollution.

“Storm drains go to the lake and if you pollute the drains, you pollute the lake,” he said.

The Fine Arts department and its students will be on hand Saturday at our second annual Community Day event from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the Springfield campus.

In addition to artists showing off their talents, students from the department’s guitar playing and songwriting classes will also be performing.

Steve Koehler is coordinator of publications at Ozarks Technical Community College. Contact him at




College Director of Communications

Phone: 417.447.2655


Steve Koehler

Coordinator of Publications

Phone: (417) 447-2666


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