Monday, August 07, 2006
Friends, for several months I’ve been working on an idea to improve the appearance of the 71st Street/I-65 interchange. This has been a New Years resolution for at least five years, and I’m finally trying to move it forward.
The concept is to screen unsightly views around the INDOT maintenance unit with plantings of native trees and shrubs, treating the salt barn as “garden architecture” while drawing the eye away from the chain link fence, equipment, and piles of gravel surrounding it.
Normandy Farms Homeowners Association president Carole Cole and I met with representatives of INDOT and the City in February at the maintenance unit; they were happy to give their verbal approval, as long as we didn’t ask them for funding.
Having developed a preliminary design for the project, I’m now ready to get others involved. I met recently with a representative of Keep Indianapolis Beautiful, and he thinks they would be interested in helping us if we can demonstrate our neighborhoods’ commitment to the project. KIB’s proposal deadline for 2007 grants is August 18, which is why I’m contacting you via e-mail rather than individually by phone.
I invite you to visit the Normandy Farms website http://www.normandyfarms.info to download a brief PowerPoint presentation that outlines the concept and shows examples of the native plants I think would work.
I hope you will feel inspired to sign on with me to the KIB proposal and to talk up the project to your friends. We will need to commit some volunteers to do the planting and to participate in an occasional work day to pull weed trees. Please feel free to forward this e-mail to people you think would like to know about the project.
And finally, please let me know by return e-mail whether you would like to participate in moving the project forward. It should not take much time, but the benefits to our neighborhoods should last well beyond our lifetime.
Together we can make it happen.
–Wendy Ford, 317-334-1932