May 17, 2022

Environmental Sustainability Committee considers funding improved greenspaces in Indianapolis

Environmental Sustainability Committee considers funding improved greenspaces in Indianapolis

Better urban tree canopy, more greenspace and parks are desired by many in Indianapolis for improved quality of life.

Innovative ways to revitalize greenspace in Indianapolis were considered Monday by the City-County Council's Environmental Sustainability Committee.  New funding options in the environmental realm could create opportunities for parks, urban canopy and other green projects.

Department of Metropolitan Development Deputy Director Rusty Carr said methods including federal grants or TIF districts could improve parks and other infrastructure. 

“We know that folks who are living in a neighborhood want access to that and so that’s why we want to make sure all of our tools are unlocked to support that,” Carr said.

Cities can also benefit from ratings agencies that consider environmental and social climate improvements. 

Morgan Mickelson, director of Indianapolis’ Office of Sustainability, said natural resources like trees can earn the city money through carbon credits.

“A credit is a value of the amount of carbon that the trees actually sequester,” Mickelson said.

Indianapolis’ Thrive Plan has a goal to plant 30,000 new trees by 2025.

The committee will next consider how funding tools may support other proposals to improve urban greenspaces.

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