Develop Indy shares its plan for West Washington Street

Develop Indy, the city, and the Indianapolis Airport Authority have released a plan to revitalize more than 800 acres on the west side in what it calls “big moves” for the corridor and its community.

INDY_West Washington_Develop Indy plan_rendering map

The proposed Ben Davis Station portion of a redeveloped West Washington Street.

Illustration via Develop Indy

More big things are in the works for the Circle City.

Economic development organization, Develop Indy, in partnership with the City of Indianapolis and the Indianapolis Airport Authority unveiled an extensive plan to boost economic development on West Washington Street near the Indianapolis International Airport.

The West Washington Corridor Study includes ~885 acres of Indianapolis’ west side, just north of the airport + proposes numerous uses — from residential to manufacturing and retail — for the north and south sides of Washington Street, stretching from the west side of I-465 to the Hendricks County line.

The study, which took several months, identified the area that includes the historic Ben Davis neighborhood, the west side of Indianapolis, and the airport, as “an auto-centric thoroughfare with harsh pedestrian conditions and a lack of accessible infrastructure.”

Plane taxiing with Indianapolis International Airport in the background

The Indianapolis International Airport opened back in 1931.

Photo by Indianapolis Airport Authority

The goal of the plan is to look for opportunities to improve the existing conditions, activate the corridor, and strategically plan for development in the area.

The study found these common desires for the area:

  • Safe pedestrian facilities along Washington Street and new trails to connect beyond the corridor
  • New park spaces and picnic spots
  • Retaining the small-town scale established by current setbacks from the roadway
  • Art, landscaping, decorative lighting, signage standards, facade improvements, and other aesthetic upgrades
  • Public green spaces connected to trails
  • Reestablishing a community garden
  • Grocery and urgent care facilities
  • Mixed-use development and housing
  • Trail access with new developments
  • Small business incubation

This updated plan is in the initial stages to be reviewed by city development officials and the public + stems from several previous efforts to revitalize the corridor in recent years.
The city has already committed to $20 million in roadway improvements closer to downtown, between Holt Road and Lynhurst Drive, which is set to start in 2025. It will include repaving, stormwater upgrades, and sidewalk improvements.

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