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Language degraded value of Cultural Trail

July 3, 2015

We appreciate Mason King acknowledging that the Indianapolis Cultural Trail: A Legacy of Gene & Marilyn Glick “is doing great things for downtown” in Eight@8 [June 23]. However, calling the Cultural Trail a “$63 million sidewalk” undercuts its true impact as an internationally recognized, urban pedestrian and bicycle pathway that cities from all over the world are hoping to replicate. Central Indiana Community Foundation led the creation of the Cultural Trail and Indianapolis Cultural Trail Inc. ensures that the trail is a beautiful connection and helps to provide a high quality of life for all of our residents and visitors.

In partnership with CICF, ICT Inc. launched the Indiana Pacers Bikeshare program in 2014, making the trail, and our entire downtown, more connected and accessible. Indianapolis is one of the most connected cities in the country when it comes to bicycling, walking and jogging. There is a long list of national and international awards and recognitions our city can point to.

CICF, Indy Hub, Indy Chamber, Central Indiana Corporate Partnership and many others are all working hard to attract the best and brightest to our fair city. The way our own residents and media talk and write about our city is too often counterproductive to this endeavor. Either the Midwest inferiority complex takes over or we just default into degrading our own accomplishments as a kind of Hoosier humility gone haywire. While our Walk Score may not be the same as Detroit’s (by the way, Detroit is less than 40 percent of the geographic footprint of Indianapolis), it is important that we celebrate our city’s many accomplishments and recognize our ongoing efforts to create a world class city.

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Brian Payne 
president and CEO Central Indiana Community Foundation

Karen Haley 
executive director Indianapolis Cultural Trail Inc.

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