Last week, a presentation was held at the Indianapolis Art Center in Broad Ripple. At the meeting, the winning team displayed their first pass of the design of the garage. I was fortunate enough to get my hands on a copy of the .pdf (click here to open). I have included a couple of screen shots here to show the visually appealing aspects of the garage. Reading through the summary, I get the impression that these folks WANT to design a structure that fits into the context of the village. They do this by summarizing the different built forms currently present in the village, and how the new mixed use structure will compliment these themes.
I have been critical of the garage but for different reasons than some of the local political folk who view this as another opportunity to take a stab at Mayor Ballard. I will ask that any comments offered to this thread be directed at the design itself and not the issues that contributed to the selection of the site. We are now past that hurdle in the project and won’t be going back. Until we get the financials on the project, no need to waste keystrokes on spilled milk.
So, what do you think? I like how the College Ave face will address the street. And at two stories, appears that it will not be a hulking, out of scale structure like say, one of the many 5-10 story structures downtown. I also appreciate that they have made an attempt to include some sort of arts theme with the structure. Hopefully that are successful in what they set out to do, and it wont look like a big concrete block with spray paint added to it. One thing I am pleased to see is the amount of bike parking. Will this be provided free of charge? I would hope so devoid of a structured cycling fare collection system in the city; something also nice. Our Mayor has gone to great lengths to ensure that cycling is a priority in the city and in that regard I would hate to see that this structure charged to park bikes. Additionally, I see nothing about an improved bus stop on the sidewalk along College Ave where the route 17 normally travels. Wouldn’t it be nice if the garage incorporated a nice covered stop with it’s improvements to the area? Lastly, I see nothing about improving the crosswalk into the village, a question I raised the last time I blogged about this structure. One final note is that this design is still fluid. This was the first round of presentations to the public and the final product could look different.