//Trail Status mouse over Java // Eagle Creek West Side Hiking Only Trail Announced.

Author Topic: Eagle Creek West Side Hiking Only Trail Announced.  (Read 604 times)

Paul_Arlinghaus

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Eagle Creek West Side Hiking Only Trail Announced.
« on: December 05, 2018, 03:28:49 PM »
The Eagle Creek Park Foundation just announced a plan to build hiking only trails on the West side of Eagle Creek. 

There announcement can be found here or on their facebook page.
http://eaglecreekpark.org/west-side-trail-project/
in 2016 HMBA replied to an RFP (Request for Proposal) for ideas to add amenities to Indy Parks thorugh outside partnerships.  Our Proposal is below.  It contains a lot of information on the West Side of Eagle Creek.

https://1drv.ms/b/s!AoY9gws0LHlQqAJM56ANXAR6yHYQ
Note that our plan seems to be the basis for the hiking only trail that is being built.

The plan that Indy Parks is rolling out costs more, builds less trails and serves less user groups.  Additionally without mountain biking included there will not be a user group to support the long term maintenance of the trail. 

There was not opportunity for public comment on this plan.  A small group made this plan behind closed doors to build the trail they want vs. want the City needs.

Please review the information below.  We will be providing guidance on next steps soon.


HMBA: Director of Trail Development / Secretary

Fett

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Re: Eagle Creek West Side Hiking Only Trail Announced.
« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2018, 10:07:06 AM »
If you are as upset about this as most of us are, here is the contact info for the mayors office and Indy's City/Countyu Council:
Indianapolis Area Legislator Contact Info
Mayor Contact Info: http://www.indy.gov/eGov/mayor/Pages/home.aspx
City/County Council Contact Info: http://www.indy.gov/eGov/Council/Documents/CURRENT%20Public%20Council%20List.pdf

Please take a minute and call or email.
Need a home mortgage?  Let me help.   Click here for more info: www.ruoff.com/jefffetterer

Paul_Arlinghaus

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Re: Eagle Creek West Side Hiking Only Trail Announced.
« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2018, 03:11:19 PM »
 Eagle Creek
It is interesting to note that with Indiana’s State Forests hold annual open houses to allow the general public the opportunity to provide public comment, Indy Parks has moved forward with a plan to build hiking only trails on the West Side of Eagle Creek without any public comment.   
In 2012 a public listening session was held on the subject of mountain bike trails on the West Side of Eagle Creek.  Over 200 people attended with views for and against mountain bike trails  Indy Parks promised to summarize the comments and get back to us with next steps.  Indy Parks did not follow through on their commitment.  When asked about the next steps, we were told the subject was being tabled.  It turns out, that that was also a lie.  Rather than tabling the topic, Indy Parks allowed the Eagle Creek Foundation to spearhead a committee made up of
 
  • ·       Indy Parks
  • ·       Indianapolis Office of Land Stewardship
  • ·       Indianapolis Department of Natural Resources
  • ·       Scott Starling Nature Sanctuary
  • ·       Eagle Creek Foundation (committee Chair John Pankhurst)
This committee had no representation from the trail community (hiking, trail running, or mountain biking).  It operated outside of public knowledge and developed a plan without any public input or opportunity to comment.  They did hold a members only meeting for Eagle Creek Foundation members to gather their comments.  This violates the public trust with respect to managing public land for the benefit of the public as a whole.  In this case a small group worked behind the scenes to create a plan that benefited them over the public good.
This plan was submitted to the Lilly Endowment and received a $2.6 million grant.  HMBA offered to partner with Indy Parks to build a trail system with more miles of trail and it would have cost substantially less than $2.6 million dollars.  We would have brought volunteers into the trail building process, which would have lowered the overall cost to approximately $500k, while training the volunteers who would remain behind to maintain the trails. 
As we watch nearby cities embrace mountain biking,
·       Terra Haute: Griffin Bike Park
 
  • ·       Louisville: Park Lands and the Louisville 100 mile Loop
  • ·       Cincinnati: Mt. Airy
  • ·       Chicago: Big March
  • ·       Columbus Ohio: Berliner Park
  • ·       Ann Arbor: DTE Energy
we continue to see Indy Park resists mountain bike access.  Eagle Creek already has over 20 miles of poorly maintained hiking only trails.  Adding more hiking trails is not going to move the needle forward with respect to getting Hoosiers outside and enjoying/appreciating our natural resources.  Indy Parks was ranked 98th (tied for last) compared to City Park Systems across the country.  The currently plan is less about providing recreation to Hoosiers than it is about locking out a single user group.
HMBA is going to lead strong opposition to this plan but we need your help. Step 1 is to build a City of Indianapolis Steering Committee. If you would like to be on the Steering Committee, please contact me (Paul Arlinghaus, parlinghaus@msn.com).  This committee will be empowered to determine the action HMBA takes and will lead those efforts. 
 To be successful will need a huge show of support from mountain bikers in the greater Indianapolis Area as well a State Wide. 
HMBA: Director of Trail Development / Secretary

matt_laker

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Re: Eagle Creek West Side Hiking Only Trail Announced.
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2018, 09:34:16 AM »
If you are as upset about this as most of us are, here is the contact info for the mayors office and Indy's City/Countyu Council:
Indianapolis Area Legislator Contact Info
Mayor Contact Info: http://www.indy.gov/eGov/mayor/Pages/home.aspx
City/County Council Contact Info: http://www.indy.gov/eGov/Council/Documents/CURRENT%20Public%20Council%20List.pdf

Please take a minute and call or email.


I emailed EVERY City-County Council member just now.  Took a little time but wanted to make sure EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM got it!
I also attempted to email the Mayor but got the "spinning circle of death" when I click on the "Contact the Mayor" link on the website, so I'll try again later or will call if email doesn't work.
Thanks for the links, Fett...definitely made it a lot easier!
Fat Bikes Matter!

Steve King

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Re: Eagle Creek West Side Hiking Only Trail Announced.
« Reply #4 on: December 15, 2018, 11:36:44 AM »
City Councilor Janice McHenry is holding a Town Hall Meeting on Wednesday, December 19th from 6:00PM – 7:30PM Linda Broadfoot, Indy Parks Director is the main speaker and the trail plan on the West Side of Eagle Creek is the main topic.
 
The location is Flanner and Buchanan Community Center (the building in back) located at 2950 N. High School Road.
 
HMBA has been advocating for access for 20 years. Indy Parks has resisted our offers for help. The only way we will be successful moving forward is if the mountain bike community as a whole makes the effort to be involved.
 
Attending this meeting will allow you to show the strong community need for more nature surface trail opportunities in Indianapolis and will help you understand what we are up against.

matt_laker

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Re: Eagle Creek West Side Hiking Only Trail Announced.
« Reply #5 on: December 18, 2018, 09:42:04 AM »
REMINDER: Attend if you can---the more the merrier!
Fat Bikes Matter!

RDF73Charger

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Re: Eagle Creek West Side Hiking Only Trail Announced.
« Reply #6 on: December 21, 2018, 08:49:23 AM »
How did the meeting go? I had to work so could not attend.

Steve King

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Re: Eagle Creek West Side Hiking Only Trail Announced.
« Reply #7 on: December 22, 2018, 09:57:44 AM »
Here is a good recap of the meeting from Terry Mitchell (someone who has not experienced Indy Park's leadership in the past.) Terry will provide some more information in comments below.  Also additional info on HMBA's Facebook site.
 
PLEASE TAKE SOME TIME TO READ THIS WHOLE POST! Last night I attended the Town Hall Meeting held by Indianapolis City Councilwoman of District 6 Janice McHenry and came away extremely disappointed at the behavior of our elected official. I would encourage anyone in the Indianapolis area(or anywhere) to share this post as we all deserve better!!
 
I just wanted to recap my takeaways from last nights town hall meeting held by Janice McHenry, First of all, there is a billboard proposal on the books for Indianapolis, and that was presented well and is important to get support, please reach out to the appropriate people and support the effort of that proposal on January 14th, I know I will.
 
Indy Parks was invited and present at the meeting to talk about (among other things) their recent Lilly Grant that was won, it encompasses a $2.6 million dollar plan to develop the west side of the park, which would put in ADA accessible hiking trails, but not in (as refereed to by the Indy Parks staff) "Eagle Creek Proper", putting instead the ADA trails away from the other amenities offered in a totally segregated part of the park. Hoosier Mountain Bike Association(HMBA) had a large(approximately half) showing at the town hall meeting, and despite our best efforts to work with Eagle Creek on proper development of these trails as multi use to reach the broadest group of users possible, HMBA and the mountain biking community has been shut out by Indy Parks. When questions arose by the mountain biking community at the end of Indy Parks presentations as to why an entire user group who is passionate and willing to volunteer to build trails, fundraiser for trails, and most importantly stay around to maintain the trails once they are built, Janice McHenry shut the meeting down saying; This is MY meeting and we are not here to talk about mountain biking at MY parks. In a conversation with Brittany Davis Swinford(Eagle Creek Park Senior Manager) after the meeting she said; I am the park manager and I get to determine which user groups can use the park. And Don Colvin(Deputy Director of Indy Parks) repeatedly said in that same conversation; that there is no such thing as multi use trails. It is clear that none of these people are willing to listen to public input about the future of the park and that they want to have it their way.
 
While both Brittany Davis and Don Colvin are not in elected positions, their direct boss and Director of Indy Parks Linda Broadfoot is appointed by our elected officials, and needs to hold her employees responsible for making the parks the best that they can be.
 
I would encourage you to reach out to your City County Council member and let them know that you are unhappy that Indy Parks was ranked 98th of 98 in a 2017 survey(then removed themselves from the rankings in 2018) and is not using this grant to help fix those problems but instead on a project that was offered to be completed by HMBA for the parks for FREE via donations, fundraising and volunteer hours and that it is important that our elected officials follow the guidance of their constituents.
 
We should NEVER allow politicians and employees of the government who think that OUR parks are THEIRS and theirs alone to do what they want making decisions. If you would like more information about mountain biking and its impact on the economy and our natural resources, or to have a conversation about any of this, I would encourage you to reach out, I would love to sit down over a cup of coffee and talk about/answer any questions, and if I can't answer them, I can hopefully point you in the direction of someone who can!
 
Terry Mitchell

Steve King

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Re: Eagle Creek West Side Hiking Only Trail Announced.
« Reply #8 on: December 22, 2018, 09:59:00 AM »
Eagle Creek Next Steps.
A core group, some new to advocacy and some long time advocates, met after the meeting. There are several actions being taken. Some we will not be discussing on Facebook.
But the next actions that you can help with is reaching out to Indianapolis City Council. With Christmas next week, we are suggesting that you wait until Jan 1st to start reaching out. We will be posting information and guidance on reaching to public officials. The most important thing to remember is that we need to win over enough City Councilors to make a difference. We need their help. Please be polite, let them know your connection to their district (work, live, volunteer), why mountain biking is important to you and your family, and that the mountain biking community wants to help make Indianapolis a better place to live.

matt_laker

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Re: Eagle Creek West Side Hiking Only Trail Announced.
« Reply #9 on: January 04, 2019, 11:00:03 AM »
Eagle Creek Next Steps.
A core group, some new to advocacy and some long time advocates, met after the meeting. There are several actions being taken. Some we will not be discussing on Facebook.
But the next actions that you can help with is reaching out to Indianapolis City Council. With Christmas next week, we are suggesting that you wait until Jan 1st to start reaching out. We will be posting information and guidance on reaching to public officials. The most important thing to remember is that we need to win over enough City Councilors to make a difference. We need their help. Please be polite, let them know your connection to their district (work, live, volunteer), why mountain biking is important to you and your family, and that the mountain biking community wants to help make Indianapolis a better place to live.


Just wanting to see if some guidance information to contact the City-County Councilors is forthcoming.  I am relatively new to advocacy so would appreciate a little direction.  Thanks in advance!
Fat Bikes Matter!

 

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