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Urbana opens sculpture project 22 years in making

Published: Saturday, Oct. 13, 2012 6:50 p.m. CDT

URBANA (AP) — Chicago artist John David Mooney has been planning and raising money to build a sculpture park for a patch of land in front of Urbana's City Hall for more than two decades. Now it's finally finished.

Mooney, who is from nearby Champaign, and Urbana officials will open the sculpture garden Sunday.

In a statement, Mooney says the land in 1990 was being considered for a parking lot. He asked city officials to leave it vacant and they agreed.

The park includes a 33-foot-tall stainless steel-and-light sculpture called "Spirit Tree" and a 12-foot fountain called "Falling Leaf."

Mooney says the park is a backyard garden for City Hall.

Mooney is known for public art works displayed at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, the Vatican and Chicago's Tribune Tower.

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