Assessing downtown cleanliness

September 9, 2009
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One reason Indianapolis gets lots of conventions is because the downtown is reasonably clean, especially compared to some other cities. Cleanliness also makes the downtown a good place for businesses to operate.

It comes through hard work. As reported in this week’s IBJ, Indianapolis Downtown Inc. patrols 370 blocks and rate them for cleanliness. The not-for-profit gets good cooperation; for the most part, property owners and managers cooperate and keep their sidewalks free of litter and gunk.

So the sidewalks are clean. But what about the rest of the downtown? It isn’t hard to find paint peeling from the black fences surrounding flower beds.

And then there are the odors. Certain areas of downtown have never smelled good due to the combined sewer overflow, but have you noticed some flower beds and alleys beginning to smell like, well, sewers? How would you rate downtown as an overall place to live and work?

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  • Maybe the IBJ could compile a list like the NYT did regarding smells of the city, http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2009/08/29/opinion/20090829-smell-map-feature.html?scp=2&sq=smells&st=cse. It's a really cool map that groups the city in different ways than normally portrayed.
  • I do agree. Compared to other large cities, Indianapolis is a much cleaner city. The few exceptions are where the homeless seem to dwell. Underneath the bridges on South St. Those areas need an over-haul, looks and smell both.
  • Not exactly downtown but the area around 28th & Meridian, just north of Ivy Tech always seems to have an unpleasant odor lingering around. I assume it's from the sewers, some days during the summer the smell extends throughout the north side.
  • I can't believe anyone could comment that our sidewalks are clean! Take a look around Palomino at Circle Center. They are black, gum pocked nightmares. Not to mention the parking garages that are operated all over downtown. I have never seen any commercial or city entity cleaning the sidewalk. I grew up in the South and at least there, you find that business owners "hose down" there hosedown their sidewalks every morning before business begins. You see it everywhere - Atlanta, New Orleans . . . Indianapolis could take a lesson.

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