INDIANAPOLIS – It’s an accident waiting to happen. At least that’s what many neighbors in the Community Heights area of ​​Indianapolis’ east side believe when it comes to reckless driving.

“I always say they are [drivers] are late for their funeral because when you drive that way, pretty soon you’re going to have an accident,” Jessie Froschauer said.

Here comes a mural painted by neighbors earlier this month. It is located at the corner of East 16th Street and Graham Avenue across from Indianapolis Public School 88.

“I was commissioned to create a piece to slow down traffic in the area,” said Deonna Craig, the artist behind the traffic calming mural.

The mural is part of “tactical urbanism” — a community-driven, low-cost approach to creating change.

“We know that Tactical Urbanism as an umbrella policy or an umbrella term, rather, encompasses many different things to many different people. It can be streetscape treatments. It may also be different ways in which neighborhoods reach out to their local government to implement various, often temporary, treatments to help road safety along their neighborhood streets,” said Ben Easley with the Department of Public Works. in Indianapolis.

Craig used neighbors’ feedback from the meetings, in the form of sketches and the like, to create the mural commissioned by the Community Heights Neighborhood Organization.

“Sometimes traffic calming murals are like a psychological trick just to tell people there’s something there and just trick their minds into paying attention to their surroundings,” Craig said.

CHNO’s president tells WRTV that talks about the project began last September after concerns about speeding and reckless driving grew in the area. They secured grant funding in March to make it a reality.

Earlier this month, CHNO said about 80 neighbors came out to paint the mural. Froschauer was one of them.

“This is my neighborhood. I am interested. I care about these kids,” Froschauer said.

She has lived a few feet from the corner of E 16th Street and Graham Avenue for nearly 30 years, saying reckless driving has always been a problem in the area.

“I hoped for it [the traffic calming mural] I want to, but there isn’t. It’s not slowing anybody down,” Froschauer said.

For this, both Craig and the neighborhood organization require patience. Next month, another mural will be painted on the other side of the street.

“Let’s talk. The people who walk these streets could be our neighbors and let’s have a dialogue about it. And it’s better than nothing,” Craig said.

Once the project is complete, the neighborhood organization tells WRTV a second traffic study will be completed to see if and how traffic in the area has changed since the traffic calming murals were installed.

For those who might want to make a similar change in their neighborhood, the Indianapolis Department of Public Works added two new policies this year — one is ‘Tactical Urbanism’ and the other is ‘Street Art. Those with points are asked to email [email protected].

“What’s important to know is that by putting these policies in place, we’re opening the door to all kinds of good ideas from the neighborhoods, to bring them to us to take a look at what’s feasible in within the framework of public and polite law. continue the conversation about how we can implement some of these together,” Easley said.

The official ribbon cutting for the mural will be held on Friday, August 26th 5-7 at IPS 88 School.

CHNO is looking for volunteers to help paint the second mural in the westbound lane on September 25th. Those interested in volunteering can email [email protected].

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