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Great Places 2020 Launches Successfully

On Friday, November 21, 2014 over 300 community leaders and neighbors gathered at Kinney Group Headquarters on the Near West side to officially launch the Great Places 2020 initiative. Great Places 2020 is a visionary community development project transforming strategic places in six Marion County neighborhoods into dynamic centers of culture, commerce and community, preparing Indianapolis for unprecedented success as we enter 2020. Each Great Place will be transformed through partnership, development and investment in: Livability, Opportunity, Vitality and Education. Key partners have emerged that will contribute to the success of Great Places 2020, including  Buckingham Foundation, the Indiana Housing … Continued

Development on Tap: Brownfield Redevelopment

All too often, older industrial and commercial properties in Marion County remain vacant or underutilized due to real or perceived environmental contamination. These properties are known as brownfields and many of these sites represent prime opportunities for redevelopment. An innovative and effective tool for remediating brownfield sites is insurance cost recovery. Insurance cost recovery uses the former insurance policies that were in place when the pollution occurred at a site to pay for the site’s cleanup costs. The insurers have been found liable for such remediation even in cases where the policies were decades old. The Local Initiatives Support Corporation … Continued

Industrial Reuse: Linking Economic Opportunities with Targeted Urban Places

LISC and partners unveiled an economic cluster study that will inform Indianapolis as we begin a more intentional and collaborative approach to revitalizing our legacy industrial districts. The study explores the infrastructure and potential of the industrial landscape in Indianapolis examined alongside the projected growth of the local B2B, technology, and food manufacturing and distribution clusters. The study features the combined knowledge of respected firms in this field: Mass Economics, RW Ventures, Bookman, Capraro Associates and Jones Lang LaSalle. Download the Executive Summary: Linking Regional Economic Clusters with Target Urban Places and the Development on Tap: Industrial Reuse Presentation. For the full report, visit … Continued

LISC, the Colts and the NFL Foundation Partner to Create New Public Football Field

Indianapolis Parks Foundation (IPF) is the recipient of a $200,000 grant through Indianapolis LISC, the Colts and the NFL Foundation Grassroots Program, a partnership between National LISC and the NFL Foundation. The grant is part of a total of $2.5 million slated by city officials to refurbish public fields this year. The City of Indianapolis and IPF designated $1.5 million in funding to build a public athletic field at Historic Central Greens. The former hospital site will feature over $52 million in current and planned development, including the new Christel House Academy Charter School, student housing, apartments, office space, a … Continued

United Way of Central Indiana Endorses Centers for Working Families Model

LISC and United Way collaborate to pave path forward for working families in Indianapolis Ann Murtlow, President and CEO of United Way of Central Indiana (UWCI), announced a partnership with LISC to benefit working families in Indianapolis. Since 2007, LISC has invested $4.5 million to implement the CWF model in Indianapolis. Indianapolis Foundation, an affiliate of Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF), has funded CWF since 2007 through the Family Success Initiative, providing annual operating grants to the CWF network. LISC currently operates six CWF neighborhood centers and a center at Ivy Tech Community College, providing bundled services to empower working … Continued

Centers for Working Families Begin Second Year of “Bridge Works” Initiative

  LISC-sponsored Centers for Working Families have begun the second year of the Bridge Works initiative.  Two centers will each receive $40,000 from Accenture to refine and expand academic-occupational “bridge” programming. These programs help low-skilled working adults to improve literacy and technical skills leading to better jobs in targeted sectors of health care and manufacturing. Indianapolis is one of just six cities in the LISC national network to receive funding to support “bridge” training initiatives. The centers to receive the additional resources are Mary Rigg Neighborhood Center and Southeast Community Services. To learn more about the Bridge Works initiative and … Continued

$30 Million Deal will bring New Gateway to Near Westwide

A collaborative effort creates a new corridor for Near West neighborhoods In a three-way partnership between Lilly Endowment, the City of Indianapolis and Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI), the Near Westside will be better connected to the university and Downtown. Michigan and New York streets will be transformed into two-way thoroughfares through IUPUI’s campus and across the river into Haughville, Stringtown and Hawthorne. The City will invest $10 million to pay for road construction on and around campus, using funds from the Downtown tax increment financing (TIF) district. Opening up the Near Westside will make these neighborhoods more appealing … Continued

LISC Indianapolis Invests $280,000 in Local Small Businesses

Grants will be used to revamp small business commercial facades throughout Indianapolis LISC has awarded matching grants to 35 local businesses through its Small Business Façade Improvement Program. This year’s commitments total $280,000 and are helping to leverage over $1.2 million in total building and façade improvements. Doubled support by the City of Indianapolis provided the financial capital for 13 additional awards over last year’s total, strengthening the program’s overall impact. Other sponsors include Chase, State Farm and the Indianapolis Neighborhood Housing Partnership. The Small Business Façade Improvement Program is one of the largest, well-established façade initiatives in the country focusing on small … Continued

Duos Expansion Means New Jobs and More Healthy Food

Duos opens a second kitchen, continues serving healthy meals and engaging community members   This Tuesday, Duos founders Becky and David Hostetter and John Garnier celebrated the grand opening of their second permanent location at The Commonground, a brand new outdoor plaza at Eskenazi Health. Duos Kitchen is redefining gluten-free, vegan and vegetarian cuisine in Indianapolis, sporting a menu of locally grown ingredients infused with international flavors. Duos began in 2010 as a food truck, serving healthy street food and engaging neighbors in urban community. Two years ago, the Hostetters and Garnier opened their flagship restaurant located at 2960 N. … Continued

Historic Central State: Bringing New Life to a New Neighborhood Landmark

Plans to revitalize Central State Hospital finally become reality Central State Hospital, created in 1827, once cared for nearly 3,000 patients on its 140 acre grounds. Funding cuts led to the hospital’s closure in 1994 and the site has been vacant and in deteriorating condition ever since. Its revitalization has been a centerpiece of the Near West neighborhood Quality of Life plan. The continued push by neighborhood residents and community leaders has begun to yield results. LISC is helping to renovate the former Central State Hospital site on West Washington St. with a $3 million construction loan to development firm Reverie Estates. The … Continued

Residents partner with IU Health in the Northwest Area to create Charlie Wiggins Park

  More than 1600 IU Health employees and over 100 residents working together have transformed a vacant strip of land in the North West Area into the new Charlie Wiggins Park. Located near west 29th and I-65, the park’s colorful tire hill connects to its namesake—Charlie Wiggins was a race car driver who lived in Indianapolis in the 1920’s.  Still in the midst of their Quality of Life planning, the North West Area seized an opportunity to connect IU Health to a local priority for improved green spaces. Together they have made positive change happen in this neighborhood.  For more … Continued

Centered on Success

Vince “Hoosier” first came to the Mary Rigg Neighborhood Center—long a partner with LISC in delivering much-need community services in West Indianapolis—at the start of 2011 after being laid off due to the economic downturn. He had been referred to the center by a friend, who suggested he enroll in a computer-training course with the hope of learning new skills that would help him get a job. “My first impression of the Mary Rigg Neighborhood Center was a really good one,” said Vince. “Everybody wanted to help me by any means they could. They wanted to hear my goals and … Continued

A Congress for the People

If you haven’t been to Indy’s Southeast side lately, you might be surprised by what you see: beautiful new homes, rehabilitated properties, rebuilt infrastructure, and commercial vitality. All the recent improvements make it a pretty exciting time to live in this part of town. But you might not know that much of the progress being made is due to the Southeast Neighborhood Congress, whose members represent the needs and desires of the community—not the government or big business. “The Southeast Neighborhood Congress represents 14 different neighborhoods that are in close proximity,” said Angie Calvert, Southeast Neighborhood Congress secretary. “We give … Continued

Brighter Kids. Brighter Future.

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis is the biggest and best children’s museum in the world. That much is pretty indisputable. It’s so much fun that it often takes some effort to remember that Children’s Museum experiences are also educational. Good thing the folks at the museum never forget. It’s why the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis has recently expanded its out-of-school-time programs in an effort to reach as many neighborhood kids as possible. “We’ve had out-of-school-time programs at the Children’s Museum for two decades,” said Anthony Bridgeman, director of community initiatives at the Children’s Museum. “Programs like our Starpoint Summer Camp … Continued

Lofty Goals. Serious Results.

The Irvington neighborhood on Indianapolis’s east side has undergone a major transformation over the last decade. While the neighborhood hasn’t experienced the steep population decline of some other urban neighborhoods, it has struggled with maintaining a healthy, thriving business culture. So to bring business back to Irvington, members of the Irvington Development Organization (IDO) Board decided to play to their strengths. “Housing has been relatively stable in Irvington—we have many beautiful, historic, and well-maintained properties—but we had started to suffer from commercial neglect and disinvestment,” said Margaret Banning, director of the Irvington Development Organization Board. “We wanted this neighborhood to … Continued