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The American Planning Association has confirmed something that we at IM have known for years—nearly 35 years, in fact.
This week the association tapped Monument Circle as one of 10 Great Public Spaces for 2011. "Architectural diversity" catalyzed this inclusion, with the Soldiers & Sailors Monument playing a suitably major role even as the "Victory" statue, now returned to her proper perch, remains a re-work in progress.
The announcement arrives on the heels of a contest that city leaders kick-started in March to seek creative ideas for maximizing the Circle's potential. According to IM's news partner WIBC, "The six-judge panel gave $5,000 to two architects from Paris, France for their entry entitled 'From Inertia to Inner Circle.' The plan included the addition of outdoor cafes and comfortable seating."
The other Great Public Spaces hail from California, Colorado, Iowa, Minnesota, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin.
Our own Deborah Paul was ahead of the trend. Check out her recent column, "Full Circle," an impassioned letter to Mayor Greg Ballard to make more of the Circle, which she said "needs to be a can’t-miss destination for residents and tourists alike."
What do you think of the Circle's inclusion on this list? And what should be done with this "great space" for the future?
As we see this week, the future is now.
(Photo by Mike Botkin)
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