Tag Archives: Mapleton

Tactical Urbanism’s History Discovered in Google’s Streetview

Ever wish you could get a 360-degree look at what your block looked like before that community garden was planted? Or wish you could give your newer neighbors a glimpse of the overgrown vacant lot that, after years of hard work, has become the pride of the block?

Thanks to Google, you can do just that. Now, when you search for an address using Google Street View, you can toggle back and forth between past and present. Here’s the front of the ioby office in 2013 and in the upper left hand corner you can see it in Aug 2007.
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The Moore family, some of our most prolific ioby Leaders, sent us this incredible series of snapshots.

fcg_2007 fcg_2009 fcg_2013

Capturing the same site in Indianapolis three times between 2007 and 2013, the Google van documented the destruction of an industrial building, the vacant lot left in its wake, and the birth of Fall Creek Gardens. A great example of a crowd-resourced placemaking project, the iconic sunflower mural in this garden was entirely funded by neighbors on ioby.

This is more than just an interesting “before-and-after.” We think that this is a powerful illustration of the restorative and creative power of community investment. We know that crowd-resourcing can have definite, if incremental, impacts on a streetscape. Now we finally have a way to go back and see where we started and how far we’ve come.

How to Develop Good Citizenship: An Old Lesson

At ioby, we often support emerging leaders with new ideas. And although many ioby projects are innovative, totally fresh ideas or use leading edge technology, many of the concepts of doing ioby work are quite old.

The tools for building community–talking to your neighbors, supporting local businesses, volunteering–haven’t changed much in centuries. Our case in point for today comes from ioby leader Justin Moore (we also awarded him a Hero In Our Backyards Award in 2012 for his work in reimagining vacant space). Together with his mother, Justin started Urban Patch, an Indianapolis-based nonprofit dedicated to making the American inner city better, and they’re starting Mapleton on the North Side of Indianapolis, where his grandfather, Albert Allen Moore worked at the Flanner House.

Below is an except from a brochure on Fundamental Education, circa 1954, developed by the Flanner House, thanks to the digital records at IUPUI.