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Old Posted Dec 15, 2006, 4:04 AM
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Carmel, IN

The City of Carmel, Indiana is located just north of Indianapolis outside of the I-465 beltway. This city has come to a crossroads on which direction to head in, and they have choosen one that is often not by most communities.

They have decided to implement density, smart growth, and new urbanist principles into their future development/redevelopment goals. My friend and I traveled their over the last weekend and explored Carmel's downtown and a development called West Clay. We were amazed with what we found and inspired by what CAN happen with new development as opposed to what normally happens.

First off we found a condo development just outside of downtown Carmel:






Just down the street was some other new development...I guess its your typical auto-repair/oil change businesses:




Now downtown, there is a lot of infill development taking place with more to come:












Here are some of the existing bldgs (the first bldgs are a couple of years old):










Some dude going in for some cash (fake):


Some cool dude just hangin' with a local:


Now here is the West Clay development:
First off some of the single-family housing stock (notice no driveways and unique architecture). This development has trails, rear-loaded garages on alleyways, and has small lots/setbacks.
















Here is the community center: with higher density, commercial uses, parks, and gathering places:


























Well so long for now, I will treat you with some downtown Indy next. For more photos of Carmel check out my photobucket site for the entire collection: http://s36.photobucket.com/albums/e33/UncleRando/

I'll leave you with my favorite pic from the trip (already saw it):


Here are a couple other projects going on in Carmel, Indiana:
Anson
This is one of the first projects I know of that is trying to mix light industrial uses with residential space.
Gramercy: Project Info
City Council just approved this project to move forward (with resident opposition to the density)...it is supposed to imitate an early 20th century Manhattan.
City Center
Carmel City Center is the at the site of the picture with the large dirt area. The project is under way and foundations were being laid.
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Last edited by UncleRando; Dec 15, 2006 at 4:15 AM.
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Old Posted Dec 15, 2006, 4:13 AM
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Looks pretty nice, how big is this place?
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Old Posted Dec 15, 2006, 4:19 AM
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Its quite large...if you were to look at it like a box of sorts it is about 1 mile long and .5 mile wide. Very cool project, I recommend checking it out if you're in the area N of Indy.
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Old Posted Dec 15, 2006, 5:19 AM
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Cool. I might have to check it out sometime. Interesting project.
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Old Posted Dec 15, 2006, 5:59 AM
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I went on a field trip to West Clay for an Urban Design class. Good stuff.
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Old Posted Dec 15, 2006, 6:26 AM
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I like how all the residents are fake

Seriously, thanks for sharing this. It's been a couple of years since I've paid any attention to neotraditional urban developments, but they look like they're maturing. It's not this awkward, post-modern "what do we do after all these years of rejecting tradition?" type of stuff. Planning students? Is that a correct observation... is this stuff getting better and better?
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Old Posted Dec 15, 2006, 2:19 PM
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Good coverage of a very attractive place.

Another of Carmel's assets is the Monon Trail; it provides a direct link with downtown Indianapolis (about 10 miles). It's beautifully executed and heavily used.
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Old Posted Dec 15, 2006, 2:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UncleRando
Just down the street was some other new development...I guess its your typical auto-repair/oil change businesses:



Ha, it's better than any oil change shop in Texas, that's for sure. Thanks for the tour. I don't believe I've ever seen this town before.
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Old Posted Dec 15, 2006, 3:37 PM
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Carmel looks like a city designed off of a liftestyle center. Not saying that's a bad thing... just looks surreal. A very Truman Show-esque town if you will.
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Old Posted Dec 15, 2006, 4:28 PM
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Carmel's infill and new devleopment looks great. They're really doing a good job. I bet demand to live there is pretty high.
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Old Posted Dec 15, 2006, 5:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xzmattzx View Post
Carmel's infill and new devleopment looks great. They're really doing a good job. I bet demand to live there is pretty high.
Yep. Upscale & pricey, too.
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Old Posted Dec 15, 2006, 9:37 PM
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^Yes....VERY pricey! But another cool thing is that the city is about to complete its 50th roundabout!!! IMO, thats very cool!
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Old Posted Dec 15, 2006, 9:50 PM
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Quote:
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^Yes....VERY pricey! But another cool thing is that the city is about to complete its 50th roundabout!!! IMO, thats very cool!
Yeah, due to the high demand this place is really expensive, but West Clay really is what a community should be, and it is mixed income in every sense of the term. In places there are literally three million dollar mansions RIGHT next to a four studio apartment units for about 100K each, all together in the same cohesive neighborhood. I mean, if that isn't income diversity I don't know what is.
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Old Posted Dec 16, 2006, 5:33 PM
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Very fast growing northern suburb of Indianapolis. Reminds me a lot of Dublin, Ohio just north of Columbus.
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Old Posted Dec 17, 2006, 3:43 PM
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wow, looks nice. thanks for the pics and tour.

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Old Posted Dec 18, 2006, 5:26 AM
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That's actually really nice. It reminds me in a way of the Glenwood Park development in Atlanta. If it is or will be hooked up to transit that's a definite winner.
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Old Posted Dec 19, 2006, 1:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LAsam View Post
Carmel looks like a city designed off of a liftestyle center. Not saying that's a bad thing... just looks surreal. A very Truman Show-esque town if you will.

Indeed. It's the same template of stock neo-traditional architecture... it reminded me immediately of Pittsburgh's SouthSide Works and Cleveland's Cracker Park (or whatever it's called). I guess I kinda like what they're doing downtown (sans the cutesy mannequins), but those West Clay homes, featuring their confused imitations of historic architectural styles, are incredibly cheesy.
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