May 9, 2023

Cultural trail will expand and span across White River

City, state, nonprofit and business. (Jill Sheridan/WFYI)

City, state, nonprofit and business. (Jill Sheridan/WFYI)

The Indianapolis Cultural Trail is expanding across the White River to Indianapolis’s near westside.

The $21 million project will add a mile to the trail, and connect near westside neighborhoods to the downtown core. It’s the second expansion since it was completed ten years ago.

City, state and business leaders gathered for the project announcement Tuesday along the banks of the White River, where the trail will stretch across the new Henry Street bridge.  It will also follow parts of South Street and Kentucky Avenue.

The trail is a legacy project conceived by local philanthropists Gene and Marilyn Glick. Their daughter, Marianne Glick, said her parents did not know how successful it would become.

“That it would have connected as many people, that it would have led to the kind of economic development that we’ve seen, it’s really amazing,” Glick said.

The expansion will lead to the front door of the new Elanco project on the site of the old GM stamping plant. It is funded through a development partnership with the Indiana Economic Development Corporation. The state is contributing $18 million, and $3 million in funding comes from the city.

The new bridge will span the river south of Washington Street, and aligns with future plans for riverfront redevelopment.

“It’s great news for a waterway that frankly too often goes neglected, overlooked, dare I say ignored,” Hogsett said.

The project will bring improvements in lighting, landscaping, stormwater infrastructure, and public art to the area.

To date, the Indianapolis Cultural Trail has received more than $100 million from government, foundation and private funders.

Construction is expected to start in 2025, with project completion expected by 2026.

Contact WFYI city government and policy reporter Jill Sheridan at jsheridan@wfyi.org. Follow on Twitter: @JillASheridan.

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