Construction is off to a good start on the $50-million, 7.5-mile Indianapolis Cultural Trail — a world-class urban bike and pedestrian path that will wind its way through downtown Indianapolis and connect neighborhoods, cultural districts and entertainment amenities. When it is completed in 2009, the Cultural Trail will connect Massachusetts Avenue, the Canal Walk, the Wholesale District, White River State Park, and Fountain Square. The trail will also connect with the Monon Trail, allowing access to Broad Ripple Village from downtown.
The project is being funded by federal and local transportation grants and private funds from individuals and foundations. City officials hope the trail will encourage fitness and interaction. And they anticipate it will increase downtown residential development and inspire new business.
Construction of the Cultural Trail is being done in six corridor stages over three years. Schutt-Lookabill Co. Inc., Indianapolis, was awarded a contract in March to construct the first segment along Alabama Street between North and Market streets. In early May, crews began removing the pavement to make way for the new trail.
"Hardscape," or the physical components of this corridor, is scheduled for completion by November, with landscaping to be added in the spring. The trail will feature hexagonal paving tiles, landscaping and public art displays.