Neighbor-led initiative to revitalize Christian Park is underway

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — Neighbors near Christian Park are taking charge in their own backyard and working on plans to revamp their local park.

“We are not saying it's somebody else's job in Christian Park. We are saying, 'How do we get it done?'" My Christian Park Neighborhood Association President Harlon Wilson said.

The association wants people to think big as they start small. The group is in the process of applying for a $15,000 grant, which has already passed two committee votes for the money.

Roughly $7,000 of it will go toward clearing invasive plant species and debris from around the Pleasant Run waterway. At times, the river can't be seen from the park because of the overgrowth. They are working with Indy's Land Stewardship Program, Keep Indianapolis Beautiful, and Reconnecting Our Waterway to see what needs to be done.

“They’ve been looking at maps. They’ve been looking at the plants, [saying], 'Okay, this is what needs to go. This is what needs to stay,'" Wilson described.

The hope is to add benches so people can enjoy the river. It's just the start, as neighbors think about the potential.

“They want a performance stage. They want up lighting on trees. They want really creative infrastructural changes that can really bring people back into Christian Park," Wilson said.

The clearing of overgrowth will also include removal of downed trees. Wilson said the debris can often enter the stream during big storms and get stuck under bridges, which can cause flooding.

My Christian Park is looking for your input and ideas to dream big. You can share your thoughts with them here.

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