Walk and Bike Carmel: Connectivity, Infrastructure and Economic Development

APA Indiana Chapter


Thursday, August 30, 2018
1:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. CDT

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Travel to Carmel to see how a plan is coming to reality along the Monon Greenway, the catalyst for the new Midtown redevelopment district. Carmel was largely developed as a car community north of Indianapolis. For decades the City grew in a way that was similar to other car suburbs across the nation. In the mid-90s Carmel leaders took steps to change the City’s direction for transportation by initiating plans for alternative modes of transportation and beginning the process of acquiring rail land for the Monon Greenway. For the last two decades, Carmel has transformed from an auto-centric suburb to a thriving walkable and bikeable community with 97,000 citizens and more than 125 corporate headquarters. In 2017 the city issued a $25M bond to reconstruct a half-mile stretch of the Monon Greenway in midtown. The reconstruction project includes separated pedestrian and cycle lanes, new landscaping, public art, vehicle lanes and a public plaza. The project has spurred millions of dollars in economic development and multiple corporate headquarters in the adjacent area, now known as the Midtown District. Parallel to the Monon, the city recently implemented a road diet on nearby Range Line Road by transforming the street from five travel lanes to a two-lane boulevard and two-way cycle track removing traffic lights and replacing them with roundabouts to more efficiently move traffic. The project also included additional pedestrian safety elements such as raised crosswalks and landscaped medians for safer crossing. The Monon Boulevard and Range Line Road projects are the first two major corridor projects in central Carmel with a primary focus on pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure. While adding to the bike and pedestrian network, these projects will also continue to spur private investment in line with Carmel’s goal to have a dense bikeable and walkable core. 


Over a decade ago, planners predicted that the Monon Greenway’s demand would exceed its original 12’ rail-to-trail ribbon of asphalt through a portion of central Carmel. The City began working with well-known designers on a vision to expand the capacity of the Monon Greenway and to establish a framework for walkable mixed use development surrounding it, resulting in plans for the new Monon Boulevard and Midtown district. The vision ultimately became a plan and the cultivation of development partnerships have turned the plan into reality. 


What started as a vision has now gone from plan to reality. The Monon Greenway & Boulevard will be the centerpiece of the new Midtown district. Two complete street examples will be showcased with the Monon Boulevard and Range Line Road improvements, both connecting City Center and the Arts & Design District. In addition to bicycling and walking infrastructure, the Monon Boulevard and surrounding Midtown District is a major placemaking effort in an area that was previously vacant and underutilized industrial land. 

Participants will learn:  

  • How Carmel took the lead by translating a vision into a plan for infrastructure, active transportation connectivity and mixed use development;  

  • How private investment and economic development will follow a strong vision and public investment; and 

  • How to create a strong sense of place and quality of life. 


Adrienne Keeling, AICP

Confirmed Speaker

Adrienne Keeling, AICP, has been with the City of Carmel since 2001. She is a Planning Administrator specializing in long range planning, including the drafting and implementation of the Carmel Clay Comprehensive Plan (C3 Plan) and the Unified Development Ordinance (UDO). Keeling is also active with the Hamilton Area Neighborhood ... Read More

Dan McFeely

Confirmed Speaker

City of Carmel

Contact Info

Tish Mayfield, tmayfield@thecorydongroup.com