Best Public Art

The Guardians of Traffic

Perhaps the best public art is the kind built before there even was such a term; certainly, the stonemasons who crafted the eight gloriously stoic Guardians of Traffic would scoff at such a dainty classification. Erected in 1932, the Guardians rise on four pylons positioned at both the Lorain and Carnegie entrances of the Hope Memorial Bridge, each one cradling a vehicle of a different era, symbolizing the advance of transportation technology from the first horseless carriages to the "modern" sedans of the period. A breathtaking hybrid of neoclassical and Art Deco design, they're an enduring reminder of Cleveland's industrial heritage. It's no wonder that passing motorists veer off-course to have a look at them. Next time you're at the West Side Market or Gund Arena, take five minutes to walk up and introduce yourself, and enjoy a dose of imposing beauty.