The Hoosierist: Broad Ripple High-Rises

Broad Ripple development, films in bars, and the hipster Hoosier Dome.

March 2019Add a comment

Q: For years, Broad Ripple had a village-y feel, but suddenly they’re putting up high-rises. What gives?
A: You can thank (or curse) recent zoning changes that allow for taller buildings. For years, the Broad Ripple Village Association fretted that the area didn’t have enough people to support its commercial district. So new construction rules, part of a plan called Envision Broad Ripple, were concocted to allow five-story buildings along College Avenue and three-story structures along Broad Ripple Avenue. Before you could say “wrecking ball,” developers rushed to take advantage. Several big apartment/retail projects are in process, with another—a huge development that would swallow the entire southeast corner of the Broad Ripple Avenue and College intersection—under review. “We’re trying to balance the old and new, and use smart growth to give Broad Ripple the improvements it needs,” says BRVA executive director Colleen Fanning.

Q: A lot of local bars in Indy show movies. How many hoops do they have to jump through to get permission?
A: If you want to screen a flick in a non-movie facility, the first thing you have to do is contact the Motion Picture Licensing Corporation, a sort of one-stop shop for folks who want to offer an occasional film without getting raided by the Copyright Police. If you have your heart set on a current release, you’ll either be refused or charged a small fortune. But if you want to, say, screen Plan 9 from Outer Space—so your patrons can make fun of it while stuffing their faces with nachos—you’re likely good to go. The Hoosierist knows it’s tempting to just use that DVD of Legally Blonde you bought a decade ago, but be advised that movie companies are pretty serious about unauthorized public viewing. Check out the fine print on any DVD box, and you see that all you bought was the right to watch Reese Witherspoon’s antics in private.

Q: I saw an ad for a concert at the Hoosier Dome. How is that possible?
A: The city imploded the original Hoosier Dome (also known to some sad souls as the RCA Dome) in 2008, but the name lives on at a far, far smaller facility located in Fountain Square. Opened in 2011 by a firm with the totally excellent-sounding moniker of Piradical Productions, the venue has carved a niche for itself as a volunteer-run facility featuring experimental and cutting-edge music. Though this all-age, alcohol-free facility could never host marching bands the way its namesake once did, it regularly hosts smaller musical groups with awesome, bad boy names such as Rattle Snake Mafia, Not My Weekend, and Mom Jeans. And the bathroom lines are appreciably shorter.

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