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Announcing new area meetup called Strong Indianapolis

Announcing new area meetup called Strong Indianapolis
I am very excited to officially announce a new area meetup called Strong Indianapolis that seeks to empower a local community of like-minded individuals who care about Indianapolis and want to see it flourish. We seek to continually make sure that Indianapolis is a livable, sustainable and desirable city for all people who live or just visit. What exactly does that mean? Let me give you some history about it and myself that might help explain things. I’ve lived in Indianapolis for over ten years, first having moved here from Milwaukee to attend college at Butler University. Due to my career...
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Downtown Hotel Proposed for Meridian and South Street

Downtown Hotel Proposed for Meridian and South Street
The Regional Center Board has heard a proposal for a new hotel, to be located at the corner of Meridian and South Streets. This area of downtown is currently a massive parking lot crater, so the infill would be welcome here. Unfortunately, the land use and design of the hotel leaves a bit to be desired: This is basically a parking garage with a small hotel attached to the top of it. The portion of the site plan dedicated to street level parking is entirely too high at this location. I suppose a positive argument for providing this much parking is that there is so much other land nearby that can...
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9th Anniversary of Urban Indy: Time for a Site Update

9th Anniversary of Urban Indy: Time for a Site Update
Today marks the 9th Anniversary of the first post on Urban Indy. It’s a good time time for an update on the status of the blog. I’m sure readers have noticed that posts on this site have dropped quite a bit. Unfortunately due to work and family restraints, I have been unable to make weekly posts like I did in the past. I’m hopeful that there will be some upcoming changes that will make blogging easier for me, but at the moment it is difficult. I’m still on the outlook for other dedicated citizens who are able to contribute to the blog with posts. There is still good discussion...
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10th and Park’s 4th Phase Swaps Flats for Condos

10th and Park’s 4th Phase Swaps Flats for Condos
In a partial follow-up to a post from April of 2015, Milhaus has applied to switch the final phase of its project at 10th and Park from flats to condominiums. They will match the style on the northern end of the unit: This is intriguing as it represents fewer units overall for the project. It will go from housing 28 flat-style units to 13 condos. This is mixed news, but it does mean less density in a downtown block. There does appear to be a new trend downtown for parcels to get more and more valuable that invite mega-large houses or a smaller condo. Further south in Chatham Arch, a long-delayed...
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Why College Avenue is Right for the Red Line

Why College Avenue is Right for the Red Line
First, the good news: The Red Line has made the DOT’s budget proposal that will go before congress this year. If all goes well, construction could start next year on the first all-electric Bus Rapid Transit program in the country. This is big. Naturally, there has a been a bit of pushback about this plan. The most common refrain mentions a support of transit, but that College Avenue should not be the route that the Red Line takes on the north side, and that it should be put somewhere else. There are a few problems that come up with this line of argument: College Avenue was the site of the last...
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PODCAST: What are we going to do about all these dead malls?

PODCAST: What are we going to do about all these dead malls?
This latest post–a podcast actually–is already over a week old, which would make it pretty stale by blogosphere terms, except that it’s particularly relevant for Urban Indy, in the wake of all the closures at the Circle Centre Mall (the most recent of which seems to be Abercrombie and Fitch, though I wouldn’t hold my breath for yet another closure before February). At any rate, this latest podcast has Aaron Renn of The Urbanophile interviewing me about my experience with this formerly ironclad retail typology.  No new malls have been built in a decade, and virtually all...
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Unfinished History: The 1988 Canal Extension

Unfinished History: The 1988 Canal Extension
This is the first post in what I hope will become a somewhat regular feature on Urban Indy. A few months ago, my coworker found this sketch of a proposed downtown canal extension, along with a Convention Center. In addition, there would be brick pavers all the way to the State Capital building from Monument Circle, and on through to the west. I’m unsure how far in the planning process this was. Google comes up empty on this one. Incidentally, I’ve heard that there used to be a requirement for all downtown proposals to submit 3-dimensional views similar to this one. It would be nice to...
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9 on Canal Phase II Renderings

9 on Canal Phase II Renderings
The second phase for the 9 on Canal project has been released to the Regional Center Hearing Examiner, and are shown below.  These are designed to be geared towards college students at IUPUI, and it does add another retail presence on the canal. This has been a tricky proposition in the past, and the canal is getting close to a full build-out. In addition to the proposed canal playscape, it does appear that at least the newer additions to the canal may help it start to be more than a mere office park amenity. The first image shows that the building is currently industrial, so adding more housing to...
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TWG Proposes Apartments for Former Gleaners’ Food Bank Site

TWG Proposes Apartments for Former Gleaners’ Food Bank Site
Good news for the East 16th Street Corridor, as a multi-use project has been proposed to the Indianapolis Department of Metropolitan Development  (page 56). The site plan calls for saving the southern portion with the cool brick Art Moderne look, and demolishing the rest of the less-historic structure. This ultimately means the removal of the Gleaners mural. But overall, this appears to be another win for the 16th Street corridor. ...
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West Clay: A Lesson Learned?

West Clay: A Lesson Learned?
Recently, the Indianapolis Business Journal’s Hamilton County Blog has posted about troubles for the Village of West Clay’s retail area. I’ve always been fascinated by this development, as it was the first greenfield development in Central Indiana that attempted to form a traditional town center under the guise of New Urbanism. Here’s the layout as seen on Google Maps: A google Street View capture of the development’s downtown area shows what has been derided by critics as a “fake town.” This is basically a case of getting some basics right (tree, sidewalk,...
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