Comments 5

  • I realize I’m swimming against the stream here, but rather than simply complain about the IMA’s new policy the biking community should redirect its efforts to persuade the city to accept its responsibility for multi-modal infrastructure as a matter of public safety as well as convenience.

    This means it is the city – not a private entity – that should provide safe and convenient bike access to the museum from both 38th Street and Michigan Road.

    As a recent newcomer to Indianapolis I am amazed – dismayed – at the lack of basic infrastructure in the 14th largest city in the country. Think about all the neighborhoods, especially around schools and places of worship, where there are no sidewalks. Pedestrians are forced to walk along the shoulders of streets and roads with heavy traffic traveling at high speeds). Too many have been killed as a result.

    Indy can do better. It certainly deserves better.

    • Welcome. You aren’t swimming against the stream at all. I agree with all of what you say.

      The IMA issue became an easy target because it is one parcel, but as a part of the overall infrastructure it’s just one of many places that need improvement. Still, the IMA hurt themselves by retreating even further behind their gates and restricting their grounds from public access. It is still a sore issue that will not go away without a new, public-welcoming initiative. Many members, including myself, have a sour taste in their mouths about a place they once loved.

      • I agree the IMA fumbled badly by adopting a “one size fits all” approach to access and parking. As someone who has conducted countless surveys and focus groups to assess target audience perceptions, knowledge, attitudes, and behavior on a variety of issues, I detect an absence of such research by the IMA as a meaningful part of their policymaking process. The larger issue, however, remains the city’s failure to live up to its responsibilities in providing and maintaining the infrastructure.

        • Totally agree on the fumble. I think the lack of research was drive by hubris amongst the leadership at the IMA. All of the comments from the IMA on the Urban Indy post about this subject smacked of corporate speak and “we know better than you” attitudes. I’m sure the IMA isn’t alone in that attitude in the greater fine arts institutions in the US and probably abroad.

          As for the infrastructure issue, Marion County (and as a result the current city limits) are massive. Like 400 sq mi huge. It won’t happen soon, but UniGov will have to go away at some point because the demands of the surrounding Marion County townships (especially the rural ones) are going to strangle this city’s budget. Most of them should have stayed on septic tanks and wells, but unfortunately there was a time when downtown was starved for cash and UniGov made sense. It is making less and less sense now.

    • You aren’t wrong about Indianapolis generally, but in this case, it so happens that Indianapolis does provide safe and convenient access to the IMA via the Central Canal Towpath, and IMA has taken steps to prevent bicyclists from accessing the campus via that route, despite having done so for many years. It’s a both/and. I agree that it would be great if every major thoroughfare in Indianapolis provided some sort of safe bike/pedestrian access. We know that isn’t the case today, and wouldn’t be the case immediately even if the next mayoral administration makes it a top priority. IMA could solve this problem with little more effort than a snap of the fingers. This problem could be solved today. That’s why IMA is the appropriate target.

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