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Indy Chamber Announces Anchoring Revitalization Program

SEPTEMBER 12, 2017

(INDIANAPOLIS) – Today, the Indy Chamber publicly announced the Anchoring Revitalization Program, a sweeping strategy aimed at redevelopment, local hiring and business opportunities around Marion County’s major institutional employers.  Today’s announcement comes after a half-day session with partners and participating anchor institutions to plan the next phases of the program as momentum builds behind a push to encourage anchor employees to live closer to work, spurring neighborhood revitalization across the urban core.

The Anchoring Revitalization Program is a three-pronged approach, with “Live, Buy and Hire” strategies that engage some of the city’s largest university and healthcare campuses, community and cultural institutions that can act as civic and economic “anchors” to the often-challenged areas surrounding them:

  • The “Live” strategy is incentivizing anchor institution employees to purchase or repair a home close to their work. The strategy, which is expected to support more than 125 homeowners, is being facilitated and financed by the Indianapolis Neighborhood Housing Partnership (INHP).
  • The “Buy” strategy will increase spending on local goods and services by strengthening supplier relationships among anchors and Indianapolis-based businesses, incentives administered by Develop Indy and the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC).
  • The “Hire” strategy aims to further develop the talent pipeline for anchor institutions, focusing on critical workforce needs with targeting training programs to boost hiring from nearby neighborhoods. The “Hire” incentives are being administered by Ascend Indiana and EmployIndy.

This effort was announced alongside several community partners who are guiding the conversations and strategies including: Ascend Indiana, Develop Indy, EmployIndy, Greenstreet, Indianapolis Neighborhood Housing Partnership (INHP), and Local Initiatives Support Corporation of Indianapolis (LISC).

“The Anchoring Program is part of our Accelerate Indy strategy to rethink economic development,” said Michael Huber, President & CEO of the Indy Chamber.  “Our anchor institutions can be catalysts for homeownership, employment, homegrown enterprise and investment in our urban core – which is itself the ‘anchor’ of our regional economy.”

The Anchoring Revitalization Program has enlisted some of Indianapolis’ most impactful institutions to participate. These include: Butler University, Community Hospital East, Crown Hill Cemetery Foundation, Eskenazi Health, Health and Hospital Corporation, Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI), Indianapolis Museum of Art, Marian University, and the University of Indianapolis.

“About three years ago, we convened a small group of thoughtful leaders to help us devise what this anchoring revitalization program could look like,” Huber explained.  “We’re pleased by the enthusiasm and engagement of our institutional partners, and encouraged by the ‘Live’ pilot program led by INHP.  Today we have a growing list of success stories of employees who have purchased or repaired a home near their workplace – adding to the livability of their neighborhood and our city.”

“As the program continues, we hope to expand the number of participating institutions. This program is based in the idea of being open to conversation on new ideas, and our goal is to bring all our anchors together in that conversation,” said Mark Fisher, Chief Policy Officer for the Indy Chamber.


The following statements are representative experiences of our partner organizations and participating anchor institutions so far with the Anchoring Revitalization Program.

“When we were approached with this program and asked to be an anchor institution, the benefit to our employees was obvious, so for us, there was no question that we would participate. The program has helped four on our staff purchase a home, and three more have made exterior repairs.  It’s a compelling benefit that we’re able to offer employees. It’s made a positive difference in the lives of our staff and will, ultimately, have a positive impact on our east side community.”

Scott Teffeteller, President, Community Hospital East

“Our anchor institutions in Indy have a lot of potential to impact economic development locally. Through the live, hire, and buy strategies included in the Anchor Revitalization Program, there is an opportunity to influence the growth of the surrounding communities that has never been explored before. The momentum of these communities will create an opening for us as a City to attract and retain talented workers that will grow our economy.”

Ian Nicolini, Vice President, Develop Indy

“The initial success of the ‘Live’ strategy is a direct result of our local anchor partners’ commitment to community development and their desire to enhance the quality of life for Indianapolis residents. Our anchor institutions are making it possible for their employees to take advantage of the benefits of living close to work, including increased disposable income and a stronger connection to their neighborhood.”

Moira Carlstedt, President and CEO, INHP

“IUPUI has leveraged our resources to maximize our positive impact on the local economy, including a number of staff members taking advantage of the Anchor Housing program to purchase and renovate homes in the area around campus.” Chancellor Paydar continued, “We look forward to building on our partnership in this initiative for the benefit of the community.”

Nasser H. Paydar, Chancellor, IUPUI

“LISC is excited to be part of creating practical ways for anchors to direct more of their purchasing power to benefit neighboring businesses and their employees”

William Taft, Executive Director, LISC

“Whether employees are already homeowners or want to purchase today or in the future, INHP’s comprehensive lending, mortgage and credit advising and home-buying education services are designed to help clients become and remain long-term, successful homeowners. We are proud to be working with Crown Hill Heritage Foundation’s anchor housing program as it will offer funding to any Indianapolis resident hoping to move into the neighborhood.”

Michael McKillip, President, Midtown Indy

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Vox/Mobility Lab video: The high cost of free parking

It’s produced by Mobility Lab, the Chilton Media Group, and Vox, released today as part of Vox’s entertaining and educational video series.

In old photos of curbside parking spaces at the dawn of the automobile era, one can see that they were always packed full, and pricing parking wasn’t even an issue yet because parking meters weren’t invented until 1935.

UCLA’s Donald Shoup

UCLA professor and parking guru Donald Shoup is interviewed in the film, detailing the two big parking inventions that came to dominate how we think about and manage parking.

One was the afore-mentioned parking meter, which manufacturers gave away to cities until the meter revenue could be used to pay back the companies. The other was off-street parking requirements that cities began issuing around the same time. Most parking lots today exist because of these so-called “mandatory parking minimums.” Cities began using these requirements to guide development.

Bottom line, says Shoup: “We require our cities to be built with a lot of parking. Off-street parking requirements really spread throughout the United States faster than almost any other urban-planning invention. They arose partly because of the lack of management of on-street parking.”

There are parking requirements for almost all kinds of development, for hospitals (per basinet), golf courses (per holes), swimming pools (per gallons of water), and, even for much-harder-to-figure places like funeral homes (per what?).

Many of the cities we love, like Paris and New York and Amsterdam, don’t have parking requirements. And they wouldn’t look anything like they do now if they did have them.

Other places should take note. Many of the under-used existing parking could be repurposed to much better uses. Shoup makes three recommendations:

  1. Remove off-street parking requirements
  2. Charge the right price for on-street parking, and
  3. To make that pricing politically popular, spend the revenue on public services along the metered streets.

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