Trails in Indiana

Cultural Trail a Legacy of Gene and Marilyn Glick

The cultural trail is officially open! Yes! But what does this mean for us, for our city, Indianapolis the capital of Indiana?


At the ceremony of the grand opening of the trail, Lori Miser, Kären Haley, Brian Payne, André Carson, Marianne Glick, Ray LaHood, and Mayor Ballard, all together through a comprehensible excitement and proudness stated the different aspects that brought this major achievement. These several corridors going through the city have already showed the potential transformation they have, incentivizing the reshaping of large parts of the downtown with residential construction, creation of local business and revitalization of neglected parts of the city.  This is a movement that started with a very simple concept: bring the people onto the streets of the city, and allow them to walk, bike, or just have fun.

Brian Payne, like a warrior in sight of an even bigger victory, put the accent on the fact that the Cultural Trail, as well as the Superbowl event, and the construction of Lucas Oil Stadium have all been huge challenges that the city has taken on; succeeding to a new level of excellence.  Now it is time for the citizens of Indianapolis to think about their city and themselves in the same terms; getting rid of the outdated conception of provincialism, and be ready to live and grow with all the consequences of what brought Indianapolis to the attention of the world, as Mayor Ballard said.


One thing that was not addressed during the celebration is the function that I personally give to the Cultural Trail. The function is to bring an identity to the city, something intangible, hard to define, but that wasn’t perceivable before the Cultural Trail. I remember only 10-14 years ago, when relatives were coming to town; and my uncomfortable feeling of having to show the beauties of my hometown---The Capitol, the Indianapolis Central Canal, Broad Ripple, Massachusetts Avenue---everything was there but disconnected; little enclaves surrounded by endless residential and business areas leaving a taste of anonymity.


The Cultural Trail, like a golden ring that encompasses the entire city, brings the continuity that was lacking in the past, at the same time giving each place the opportunity to show its uniqueness.  One admirable example is the revitalization of Fountain Square that may explain a little more of what I mean for the Cultural Trail bringing an identity to the city. The construction of Interstate-70 almost destroyed Fountain Square, which then started rebuilding its community many years ago. This transportation way cut and severed this place full of history and traditions from the very city it has been connected to since Ralston’s original 1821 Plan for Indianapolis.  A new way of transportation, the Cultural Trail, reconnects Fountain Square as one of the trendiest places of the city.

Article by Guido Maregatti