IBJOpinion

Neighbor input needed in revitalization efforts

August 10, 2009
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IBJ Letters To The Editor

As an organization working hard to help revitalize Indianapolis, Local Initiatives Support Corp. applauds the efforts of the American Institute of Architects in our city. We also wanted to take a moment to second the ideas expressed last week in AIA Indianapolis President Sanford Garner’s Viewpoint column.

Garner expressed concern that current residents benefit from revitalization and pointed out the importance of community dialogue as part of the process. These are areas of great concern for LISC and others involved. That’s why two of the projects he mentioned— the Super Bowl Legacy on the near east side and Central Greens on the near west—operate as partnerships among neighborhood-based nonprofits, the city, and the private sector.

Groups such as LISC have invested in engagement efforts by development groups in which residents actually set the agenda for their neighborhoods’ futures, which become the redevelopment plans attracting outside partners.

LISC has confidence in the power of neighborhood groups to shape great ideas and make them happen in partnership with others. This is just what we’re seeing in the Legacy Project. It started as a plan created by neighbors on the near east side. After being embraced by the Super Bowl Committee, this neighborhood vision has become an amazing success for the community. We are excited to see the AIA supporting such efforts around the city.

Bill Taft
Executive Director, Local Initiatives Support Corp.

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