A friend called me the other day and said, "Mali, I love my city more because of you. I didn't know about the IRT, about the Cultural Trail or about all of our local restaurants until you introduced me." I thought: Well, there's a success story. It was interesting to me that many of the venues and activities she mentioned were parts of Indy's arts and culture scene. She was already a sports fan but now that she's been introduced to the arts, she loves her city.
Indy turns 200 years old in 2020. City planners and people who think about the future of our urban core are already calculating how to make the next 100 years amazing via a strategic process named Plan 2020. Plan 2020 is being organized and developed at The Hall and will have a public launch on Wednesday, June 11th. The plan is divided into five parts -- Love Indy, Work Indy, Serve Indy, Connect Indy and Choose Indy. The Love Indy portion will work to use arts and culture to improve the quality of life in Indianapolis. It's working for more success stories like the one with my Indy-loving friend.
Plan 2020 is an initiative to forge a compelling future for the Circle City. It's a collaboration among the Greater Indianapolis Progress Committee, Department of Metropolitan Development, and community leaders to make Indianapolis a better place to live, work and visit. The Love Indy committee, of which I'm a part, considers entertainment, fun, community pride, arts and culture as components of making a more loveable city. Research backs that up, indicating that people love their place because of their senses being aroused and because of their cultural options. When asked, the people in the study consider the fresh flowers they've smelled, the dancers they may have run into at a nearby park or recalling a positive experience they've had at a concert or other such cultural event. They enjoy the sense of wonder and spontaneity they find in their city. Do we have this Indy? Do we need more of it?
Indy's cultural scene has grown tremendously over the past 15 to 20 years. It's interesting to think about how much more we have to go -- how much more potential exists for us. It's exciting to consider how many additional residents that Plan 2020 will draw to the city and how Love Indy will keep them here. Next Wednesday's launch will offer the public an opportunity to tell Indy what they value as it relates to cities and what they wish our city valued more. There won't be beer, but there will be music by a local artist and Herron graduate, Brandon Lott. What we're trying to gauge are values. The happy-hour-style party is free and more information on the plan can be found at plan2020.com.
Want to offer your input before the launch at The Hall? Submit your thoughts via a short survey here.