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Indianapolis Cultural Trail: A Legacy of Gene & Marilyn Glick
Indianapolis Cultural Trail, A Legacy of Gene & Marilyn Glick Logo.jpg
Abbreviation ICT
Formation April 2007 (April 2007)—May 2013 (May 2013)
Legal status non-profit
Purpose urban linear park; multi-use trail
Headquarters 132 West Walnut Street
Location
Executive Director
Kären Haley
Main organ
Indianapolis Cultural Trail, Inc.
Budget
$1 million (2017)
Staff
10 (2017)
Volunteers
4,500 (2017)
Website indyculturaltrail.org

The Indianapolis Cultural Trail: A Legacy of Gene and Marilyn Glick is an 8.1-mile-long (13.0 km) urban multi-use trail and linear park located in central Indianapolis, Indiana. The trail has inspired similar projects in U.S. cities such as Charlotte, Cleveland, Denver, and St. Louis.

Description

The Indianapolis Cultural Trail is an urban multi-use trail. The trail is identifiable with tinted concrete pavers, providing visual continuity. Street furniture, trash receptacles, signage, and lighting are also consistent throughout the trail's route.

Route

Care-Don't Care by Jamie Pawlus
Care/Don't Care by Indianapolis-artist Jamie Pawlus, located on the Massachusetts Avenue spur of the Cultural Trail.

The Indianapolis Cultural Trail is composed of a downtown loop and three spurs. The northeastern spur follows Massachusetts Avenue, terminating at a connection to the Monon Trail near 10th and Bellefontaine streets. The southeastern spur follows Virginia Avenue, terminating at its intersection with Prospect and Shelby streets in the Fountain Square neighborhood. A two-way cycle track along Shelby Street links the trail with the Pleasant Run Greenway. A short southern spur follows Capitol Avenue, connecting the Indiana Convention Center and Lucas Oil Stadium, terminating at South Street.

The trail intersects with the Canal Walk, a 3-mile long (4.8 km) pedestrian loop flanking the former Indiana Central Canal.

Glick Peace Walk

The walk can be accessed at West Walnut Street between North Meridian Street and North Capitol Avenue.

Attractions

Pre-Swim-HDR-3-shots
The Indianapolis Cultural Trail overlooks downtown Indianapolis in White River State Park.

Indianapolis has seven designated neighborhoods as Cultural Districts, first established in 1999. The purpose of these designations was to capitalize on cultural institutions within historically significant neighborhoods unique to the city's heritage for economic development and revitalization.  Six of the seven districts are located along the Cultural Trail.

The seventh district, Broad Ripple Village (about 6.5 miles (10.5 km) north), is connected to the Cultural Trail via the Monon Trail.

Public art

Public art in the Mass Ave District of Indianapolis
A sampling of public art viewed from the trail: Ann Dancing (foreground), a piece by British-artist Julian Opie, and My Affair with Kurt Vonnegut (background), a mural completed by Indianapolis-artist Pamela Bliss.
See also: Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis Public Art Collection

As of 2019, there are nine commissioned art installations along the trail:

  • Ann Dancing (Julian Opie)
  • Care/Don’t Care (Jamie Pawlus)
  • Chatham Passage (Sean Derry)
  • Looking Through Windows (Michael Kuschnir)
  • Moving Forward (Donna Sink)
  • Poet’s Place
  • Prairie Modules 1 & 2 (M12)
  • Swarm Street (Acconci Studio)
  • Talking Wall (Bernard Williams)

In addition to commissioned art, the Arts Council of Indianapolis's "Indy Arts Guide" lists 61 pieces of public art along or near the trail as of January 2019. In August 2018, Citizens Energy Group partnered with the Harrison Center for the Arts to install 20 artist-designed manhole covers along the trail. The initiative sought to bring public attention to Indianapolis waterways and the $1.9 billion DigIndy project to correct the city's combined sewer overflows (CSOs) by 2025.

History

After 12 years of planning and six years of construction, the Indianapolis Cultural Trail: A Legacy of Gene & Marilyn Glick officially opened in 2013. The $62.5 million public-private partnership, spurred by an initial donation of $15 million by philanthropists Gene B. Glick and Marilyn Glick, resulted in 8 miles (13 km) of urban bike and pedestrian corridors linking the city's cultural districts with neighborhoods, IUPUI, and every significant arts, cultural, heritage, sports and entertainment venue downtown.

Indiana Pacers Bikeshare

Indiana Pacers Bikeshare
Indiana Pacers Bikeshare station on the Cultural Trail at West Georgia Street and South Capital Street

The Indianapolis Cultural Trail, Inc., in partnership with BCycle and the Herb Simon Family Foundation, launched Indiana Pacers Bikeshare in April 2014 as the city's bicycle-sharing system, consisting of 29 stations and 251 bicycles. The system is named after the city's NBA franchise, the Indiana Pacers, which is owned by Herb Simon. An expansion in September 2019 added 21 stations and 275 more bicycles. The expansion was partially funded through a $1.2 million Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) program grant through the Federal Highway Administration. As of September 2020, Indianapolis Cultural Trail, Inc. manages, maintains, and promotes Indiana Pacers Bikeshare's 50 stations and 525 bicycles. About half of the Indianapolis Cultural Trail's annual $1 million budget is allocated to managing the program, which is self-sustaining through bike rental fees, annual memberships, grants, and sponsorships.

Impact

According to the Indianapolis Business Journal, early grant applications predicted $863 million in development generated within a 0.5 miles (0.80 km) radius of the trail. An Indiana University Public Policy Institute report released in March 2015 found that assessed value of properties within 500 feet (150 m) of the trail increased by $1,013,544,460 from 2008 to 2014. Other key finds from the report:

  • Trail usage along the trail exceeds that of most other Indianapolis trails and greenways
  • Users feel safe on the trail
  • Exercise and recreation is the primary reason for use
  • Businesses located on the trail have hired additional employees
  • Property values have increased along and near the trail
  • Users reported spending and economic impact tied to trail usage

The trail has also been considered a boon for convention business and inspired interest from cities throughout the U.S. and Europe.

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