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I’ve written a couple of blog posts about NoMa’s slow growth towards being one of city’s supposedly “hot new neighborhoods.” Expectations are high. But, the vision is not entirely inevitable. At least, it’s facing significant challenges. But, if NoMa is to become the  Soho-wannabe neighborhood it seems to be angling for—-or something more than just a Northern Virginia-esque community of boxy office buildings—-it needs to be spruced up. And luckily, that change is on the way now (this via theWashington Business Journal):

The North of Massachusetts Avenue Business Improvement District has secured a $50,000 grant to help fund a $100,000 public art project at the northwest corner of First and M streets NE.

The D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities gave the NoMa BID a $50,000 matching grant to install art in a plaza space in the neighborhood north of the U.S. Capitol and Union Station…

“First Street is envisioned as NoMa’s future Main Street, and will be lined with shops and other places for residents, workers, and visitors to explore and enjoy,” said Dana Chieco, planning and program manager for the NoMa BID. “Public artwork will contribute to the vibrancy of the public realm, and provide opportunities for local artists to develop and showcase their talents.”