CARMEL, Ind. — The launch of Major League Baseball, NCAA March Madness taking over Indy, this was supposed to be a week of economic growth and foot traffic, instead, you won’t even find feet on parts of the Monon Trail thanks to the coronavirus.
“The greatest civil liberty we have is the right to be safe and healthy,” explains Carmel Mayor Jim Brainard.
The mayor is shutting down the stretch of the Monon between Main Street and City Hall. This also includes the Midtown Plaza. The city’s electronic counters clocked more than 3,000 people running or biking through their yesterday. Mayor Brainard says that’s too many people in close proximity to maintain social distancing. He is also closing down Carmel golf courses.
“We want to encourage people to get out, and use our trail system. We have another 230 miles of trails,” Mayor Brainard adds, “We need to slow down the spread of the virus to give our scientific community time to develop treatments. We have to avoid that so our doctors never have to make the decision who gets a ventilator and who doesn’t. We can do this. I’m positive we can do it.”
These types of closures continue to impact local tourism, and the 83,000 people in Indy area who rely on the industry for a paycheck. Representatives for Visit Indy see events being rescheduled for June and July.
“Its almost like a game of Tetris. It’s how can you fit as many pieces in as possible, and now instead of twelve months we are most likely looking at six or fewer,” says Chris Gahl with Visit Indy.