Old City Hall revamp aims to centralize planning, bring back jobs

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Feb. 28, 2014) – The City of Indianapolis hopes a revamped Old City Hall serves as ground zero for a renewed planning effort encouraging communication and job growth.

The Hall, as it is now dubbed, served as City Hall for decades after its construction on North Alabama Street in 1909.  For the past several years, however, it has sat essentially vacant.

“We own this building and so, heck, let’s utilize it as we continue to find a long-term use for this structure,” said the Department of Metropolitan Development’s Derek Naber.

At 9 a.m. Friday, Mayor Greg Ballard (R-Indianapolis) is scheduled to kick off the reopening with remarks about Plan 2020.

According to Naber, Plan 2020 essentially takes five different planning initiatives, which would have taken a year each to conduct, and allows them to occur at the same time, in the same space.  Keeping it open to the public on weekdays between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. will further encourage communication that yields the best planning outcomes, Naber said.

“Just making sure that everything’s working together to improve the quality of life within the city of Indianapolis,” he said.

A major focus will be retaining existing manufacturing jobs and attracting new ones in a city that has lost 30,000 in the past decade.