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Welcoming Campus Trail

Restoring Greenways – Connecting Communities


The Lilly ARBOR, a restored greenway, borders the western edge of campus. (Photograph by VR Schmalhofer.)


CEES shared an update on its Welcoming Campus Innovator Grant, Restoring Greenways – Connecting Communities at the 2019 Welcoming Campus Conference in April.  

 Chancellor Nasser Paydar welcomes attendees to the Welcoming Campus Conference (left).  Dr. Victoria Schmalhofer, Assistant Director of CEES, represents the Center at the conference poster session (right).


The goals of Restoring Greenways – Connecting Communities are to encourage IUPUI students to investigate the natural and urban areas west of campus, and, in a spirit of openness, to invite members of the Indianapolis community to likewise explore these spaces, as well as the IUPUI campus.  Over the past year, interns at the Center have been working to develop the project; like any project, Restoring Greenways – Connecting Communities has evolved.  The result is the Welcoming Campus Trail (WCT).  

The Welcoming Campus Trail and White River at the Washington Street Pedestrian Bridge. (Photograph by VR Schmalhofer.)


Starting at New York Street, the WCT runs along the eastern bank of the White River, proceeding north towards 10th Street and south towards White River State Park. The trail crosses the White River at the Washington Street pedestrian bridge and loops back north along the river’s western bank, crossing again to the eastern shore at New York Street.  The WCT parallels a portion of the existing White River Trail system and connects with the Indianapolis Cultural Trail at White River State Park. These connections provide further opportunities for exploration of the city.  The White River Trail continues along the western bank of the river (south of the Indianapolis Zoo), and northern branches extend towards 16th Street and Martin Park.  The Indianapolis Cultural Trail conveys trail users to the Canal Walk and other sections of the city.

The Welcoming Campus Trail map.


When completed, users of the WCT will be able to connect to a trail map and web site (via a smart device, such as a cell phone or tablet) that provides information about points of interest along the trail.  The WCT will feature natural areas along the White River, such as the Lilly ARBOR forest restoration site (between New York and 10th Streets) and the Monarch Sanctuary (south of New York street).  By including a loop on the west bank of the river, the WCT will introduce IUPUI students to areas on west side, such as The Indianapolis Zoo, White River Gardens, and Limestone Alley.

 Limestone Alley features massive blocks of limestone (top), carvings (bottom left), and depictions of famous buildings constructed of Indiana limestone (bottom right). (Photographs by VR Schmalhofer.)


An inaugural trail walk is planned for the Fall 2019 Week of Welcome.



Launched by Chancellor Nasser H. Paydar in spring 2016, the IUPUI Welcoming Campus Initiative was created to foster an environment that encourages and supports the highest levels of personal and academic achievement among students, staff, and faculty.  It was also designed to make members of the community feel welcomed, inspired, and encouraged to stay on campus.  The initiative is tied to IUPUI's strategic planOur Commitment to Indiana and Beyond, especially to efforts to support student success, faculty and staff development, and community engagement.  The Innovation Fund, established November 2016, provides competitive grants designed to inspire and fund collaborative projects that support the recommendations of theWelcoming Campus Initiative.  Many projects developed during Round II will be showcased during IUPUI's 50th anniversary year.





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