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Posted by Allegra East on Sep 15, 2017

WHO RIDES THE BUS: Examining Transit Ridership in Marion County

Our September 14 SAVI Talks! program, WHO RIDES THE BUS: Examining Transit Ridership in Marion County, addressed a timely and interesting topic regarding public transit in Indianapolis. The event showcased findings from The Polis Center’s newest report, WHO RIDES THE BUS: Examining Transit Ridership in Marion County.

Kudos to report co-authors Kelly Davila, MS, Senior Research Analyst; Matt Nowlin,  MURP, Research Analyst; Unai Miguel Andres, MS, SAVI GIS technician; and Debra Hollon, MS, GIS Analyst, who compiled a rich and meaningful report.

They combined information from the recent IndyGo survey with a variety of neighborhood socio-economic factors from the SAVI community information system to better understand how and why certain groups of riders used the service.  The report provides general audiences with an informed geographic approach to transit to see how place plays into the equation.

Attendees also learned more about IndyGo’s expansion of transit service in Indianapolis through the implementation of the Marion County Transit Plan from Bryan Luellen, Vice President of Public Affairs, IndyGo.

Another highlight of the morning was the excellent discussion let by moderator Matt Shafer Powell, Chief Content Officer, WFYI,  on related report concerns from various perspectives by esteemed panelists: Karissa  Hulse, Director of Development & Operations, IndyHub; James Taylor, Executive Director, John H. Boner Community Center; and Michael Twyman, PhD, Principal/Owner of InExcelsis Consulting.

Takeaways from the program include:

  • Half of the riders at this time commute to and from work, especially those with lower income.
  • Riders are a cross-section of people from nearly every neighborhood and economic status in Indianapolis. Some people rely on bus service in a life-sustaining way; others are becoming more willing to use it, but it is evident that is a different choice system.
  • Riding the bus is to a degree a social justice issue in Indianapolis.
  • Use of transit promotes economic mobility and improves educational, housing, and health outcomes.
  • Transit promotes social mobility, reducing social isolation by providing a link to shopping and social activities.
  • We need to work on changing the perception of using public transit in Indianapolis.  It is simply a means to get about, an affordable transportation option particularly when combined with affordable housing, and it connects people and the community.
  • The motivating factors for people moving back downtown is very different from what it used to be. These typically younger individuals are more inclusive and tolerant of differences and consider viable public transit for everybody the number one most important issue in their decision to stay in Indianapolis long-term. They want to choose transit but frequency, safety, and comfort are deciding factors.

If you missed the event, you may enjoy the PowerPoint presentations of Bryan Luellen and Kelly Davila and Matt Nowlin and download the report.

Most importantly, we thank our program partners: IndyGo, the Metropolitan Planning Organization, WFYI, The Polis Center at IUPUI, the IUPUI School of Liberal Arts, and IUPUI.

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Posted by Allegra East on Aug 28, 2017

SAVI Talks: Public Transit in Marion County

Join us Thursday, September 14!

Our fall SAVI Talks event will cover public transit in Marion County and feature data findings from our most recent community trends report authored by Polis Center professionals Kelly Davila, Senior Research Analyst, and Matt Nowlin, Research Analyst.

  • We’ll explore data findings from a public transit ridership survey and examine what they reveal about:
    • various types of transit riders and how they use transit.
    • how place plays into the equation.
  • Our distinguished panel will discuss the findings and consider what they show about:
    • opportunities to improve transit access.
    • implications for the implementation of the Marion County Transit Plan

In addition, Bryan Luellen, Vice President of Public Affairs, IndyGo, will discuss IndyGo’s expansion of transit service in Indianapolis through the implementation of the Marion County Transit Plan. Panelists for the broader discussion on the implications of the data findings include:

  • Karissa  Hulse, Director of Development & Operations, IndyHub
  • James Taylor, Executive Director, John H. Boner Community Center
  • Michael Twyman, PhD, Associate Faculty, IU Lilly Family School of Philanthropy

Matt Shafer Powell, Chief Content Officer, WFYI, will moderate.

The event will be held at WFYI, 1630 N. Meridian St., Indianapolis, IN 46202 from 7:45-10:00 a.m.  RSVP today!

SAVI Talks! Public Transit in Marion County is a collaboration of the following partners: The Polis Center, IU, the IUPUI School of Liberal Arts, WFYI, IndyGo, and the Indianapolis Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO).

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Posted by Allegra East on Feb 23, 2017

IndyVitals Tool Nominated as Innovation of the Year for TechPoint 2017 Mira Awards

18th Annual Event Honors ‘the best of tech in Indiana’

IndyVitals–a digital neighborhood monitoring tool developed by The Polis Center at IUPUI in partnership with the Greater Indianapolis Progress Committee (GIPC) and the City of Indianapolis Department of Metropolitan Development–has been nominated as Innovation of the Year for the 18th annual TechPoint Mira Awards presented by Angie’s List, Genesys, and Salesforce.

The Innovation of the Year Award category recognizes scientific achievements, the results of R&D efforts, and other trailblazing, market-disrupting new technologies. In particular, the technology-based innovations must have achieved a significant development milestone in 2016 and must have been primarily developed in Indiana.

TechPoint, the growth initiative for Indiana’s technology ecosystem, produces the Mira Awards each year to honor the most innovative and successful technologies and technology companies in Indiana, as well as entrepreneurs and educators. Nominees were selected by 50 independent subject matter experts who evaluated and ranked the applications. Winners will be announced during the annual Mira Awards gala at The Westin Indianapolis on April 29, 2017.

The Polis Center at IUPUI, applied for the TechPoint Mira Award Innovation of the Year category because the tool is proving to be a very useful solution for organizations from multiple sectors trying to make Indianapolis a great place to live and work. Based on the SAVI community information system, IndyVitals was created to address the challenge that various organizations have encountered in telling a common story about a particular Indianapolis neighborhood and making meaningful comparisons. Each entity sees a different version about a neighborhood from its perspective, which impacts the effectiveness of varied efforts to transform negative conditions into positive ones.

The true power of IndyVitals is its ability to coordinate actions of community partners through data. This consequently aligns diverse planning partners toward a common goal and better organizes municipal government using common “building blocks” of neighborhood geographies. The tool puts everyone on the same page, puts the data in a common framework, and simplifies access, revealing the areas of critical need and opportunity to guide more successful endeavors to develop and improve these communities.

For organizations involved in quality-of-life, social services, and economic development programming, the tool provides a common geographical approach that tells a single story. Innovation is also demonstrated by how viewers use the resulting data. The data that informs neighborhood vital indicators prompts new ways of thinking about how to solve some complex challenges, resulting in greater synergy in making Indianapolis a great place to live and work. For information on IndyVitals, visit its Nominee Page (http://bit.ly/2m0P0WE). We also encourage you to publicly vote for and share it. IndyVitals tool access is available at www.indyvitals.org.

“In just over a decade, Indiana has seen more than $6.5 billion in acquisitions and IPOs from our tech community. More recently, in 2016, two-thirds of all the venture capital dollars and three-quarters of all the deals raised in Indiana went to tech companies,” said TechPoint President and CEO Mike Langellier. “The Mira Awards exist to celebrate our state’s tremendous tech success stories and amplify them to media, investors and technology buyers nationwide.”

A complete list of the 2017 TechPoint Mira Awards nominees is available at www.techpoint.org/mira.

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