Does perception meet reality?

MSN (by way of Seriously, I hate that domain name) has deemed Indianapolis “a city that needs help getting green”. To be sure, we are following the pack in that area. However, I’m not sure how well researched the blurb is. For instance, there is no mention that each vehicle in our bus fleet has a bicycle rack (something other cities are still fighting for). Also no mention of the projects of Casa Verde or the Cultural Trail. They site the green roof on the parking garage of the Art Museum, but there are other green roofs in the works (3 Mass Ave, Chatham Center, Ralston Square.

The power of perception is huge. It’s possible that new college graduates will read articles like this, and decide on their next move due to each city’s green initiative. At this point our city is not green, nor is it sustainable. This I would not debate. However, I have to feel that things are getting better, which is one of the reasons I started this blog. Here’s hoping that the momentum can be sustained in 2008.

Comments 5

  • I was really disappointed in the research efforts, or lack there of, of the author of the article. Adding to your list, there was also no mention of Indy Greenprint (the green initiative started by the Peterson administration).

    It is easy for media outlets to play up the traditional stereotypes of people/places (i.e. Indianapolis is not progressive and therefore not green). While this holds some truth, the green movement in Indy is by no means non-existent.

    This article only proves that there will have to be major changes in Indy before perceptions start to change. I think the Cultural Trail will have an amazing impact not only on outside perceptions, but also on the way people live and consider the environment/quality of life in Indy.

  • I thought about including the Greenprint, but I went to their webpage and it was blank. It an be continued with the current administration, which remains to be seen.

    Thanks for the comment. I love the Cultural Trail. Almost rode my bike down there yesterday but it was not meant to be.

  • In browsing the new Mayor’s website, there is no mention of the Green Commission. The staff director has not been replaced.

    I suspect this fits into Mayor Ballard’s idea of stripped down government and what’s really important in city government. For this time and place, he may be right.

    A government green commission isn’t really needed for like-minded people to work from the grass roots. Architects, contractors, funders (CICF and The Lilly Endowment) and the big non-profit institutions in town with major building programs (hospitals, museums, colleges) can all drive greening along with community-based organizations like CDCs, The Nature Conservancy, KIB.

  • Thanks for the comment CDC. Thankfully, the momentum for the city is already shifting away from all-out sprawl. Less sprawl has been built, as there are less buyers for the homes. Hopefully more people will continue to look inward instead of outward for new developments.

    I’ll post about the Nature Conservancy’s new headquarters next week. Good news there.

  • I think I’d be more worried that kids would read on that this is one of the top five cities for retirees to consider.

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