What’s In A Name? The Case For a New Georgia Street

There are visible signs that our city slowly manicuring its look as it prepares for the 2012 Super Bowl. At the top of that list - East & West Georgia Street, which is showing signs of regeneration. A complete transformation and welcome addition to the downtown Whole Sale District, whose new look will focus on pedestrians, water management, and managed activities. Oh yes…Georgia Street in downtown Indianapolis will be a horse of a different color – including outdoor dining, open performances, vending space, and public art.

Considering all that, you might say that things are looking good for ‘Ol Georgia Street, right?

Recent concerns by city officials, urbanists, and downtown leaders about the Georgia side of the historic three block street is being challenged, amidst concerns that the Southern State may create brand confusion for the city – or worst, create confusion in front of a televised Super Bowl audience. This isn’t the first time Indianapolis has said good-bye to other historic names – as Tennessee (now State Street)  & Mississippi (now Capital Street) all suffered a similar fate – expulsion from our city streets.

Charged with tackling this alleged confusion? Indianapolis Downtown Inc. who sought the expertise of  local advertising & design teams to better understand the future of “Georgia Street” and its potential as a new semi-public space in our city.

 

las Rambas // www.bikefriendlyoc.wordpress.com

Inspired by Las Rambas, a famous street in Barcelona, the design could be considered a hybrid of sorts – combining a “Boardwalk” meets “Street Rail Car” type attitude whose programmatic motivation is simple and sustainable -  a  pedestrian focused urban space between downtown Conseco Field House and the Indianapolis Convention Center.

In this spirit, a diverse group of creative people, were invited to help narrow in on some big ideas about our cities newest downtown addition. In collaboration w/ So Design & Consultancy, our submission described a unique way to frame the personality of an urban space. “Over/Time”, as we referred to it, is a subtle yet flexible brand identifier that promotes the corridors flexibility and potential to grow into a cities culture.  We  focused on developing a simple concept where logic is featured over image – allowing the spaces organization to be the immediate stimulus and space identity to follow that. We wanted to also be sure that “Over Time” be communicated across multiple layers while referencing the idea of social culture, time, economy, and athletics.

  • Joh Padgett

    And we don’t think the sports angle is not a wee bit overplayed in Indy? Some of us who live here are tired of the focus on sports teams and sports figures in this city.

  • Anonymous

    When my teammate and myself looked at how the “Champion” figures/icons would be featured- our team imagined, as you did, figures that expanded the idea of champion beyond athletics. It was important that figures like Kurt Vonnegut and forgotten champions like Charlie Wiggins be considered in the space. Thanks for your comment.

  • Les Newport

    Although I’m not a huge sports fan, I do appreciate the significance of the unique sporting entertainment complex in Downtown Indianapolis. Thanks to all who have worked so hard to make Indy a leader in the entertainment and convention industry. It might help others to know the actual historical impact of these efforts, particularly since the hosting of the Pan Am games in 1987.