May 8, 2023

No vote on right turn on red, but council passes affordable housing and economic development measures

file photo (Jill Sheridan/WFYI)

file photo (Jill Sheridan/WFYI)

The Indianapolis City-County Council took up issues around affordable housing, public art and economic development Monday but did not vote on a move to ban right turns on red in the downtown core.

The right turn proposals were set to receive final approval, but were killed after state lawmakers passed a bill with a late amendment prohibiting Indianapolis from banning the turns.

In a statement released before Monday’s meeting, councilors said the move will have a negative impact. 

“We will continue to work closely with the Department of Public Works, community partners, and constituents to find solutions that protect pedestrians and cyclists,” the statement read.  

Councilors approved proposals that appropriate more than $35 million in additional funding for affordable housing, park development, public art, youth programming and eviction prevention programs. 

One proposal approves $5 million in opioid settlement money that will fund continued violence prevention programs. More than $8 million was appropriated for additional DPW work.

Economic development areas and affordable housing projects were also approved. 

The Forty Six Flats project uses payment in lieu of taxes and low-income housing tax credits to provide units at 60 and 30 percent of the area median income.  Other measures, including TIF districts and community development grants, add affordable housing.

Department of Metropolitan Development acting director Rusty Carr said the definition of affordable housing varies.

“Really what we’re talking about is a range of incomes and it’s really deal specific, because candidly it comes down to the financing and the actual funding mechanisms,” Carr said.

A newly introduced proposal will approve more than $600 million in bonds to take over the construction of a hotel project on Pan Am Plaza.

A special resolution that recognizes attacks on that LGBTQIA+ community and reaffirms a city commitment to their safety and freedom was passed.

“One supportive adult in the life of queer youth can change the course of that life significantly,” said Levi Wagner, with youth housing program Trinity Haven.

Indiana state lawmakers passed measures this year that may target LGBTQ youth in Indiana.

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

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