Fishers Calls On Community For Nickel Plate Trail Ideas

Photographer: Brian Brosmer

While the concept of the Nickel Plate Trail was announced back in February 2017, its construction is finally set to begin this spring. The trail will start at 96th street and stretch up to Noblesville Square, according to Fishers’ City Councilman John Weingardt, co-chairman of the trail’s Master Planning Committee.

“Mayor Fadness asked me to put together a group of stakeholders from the community,” Weingardt says. “And so far, it’s been a pretty interesting experience. We’ve had amazing input from the community, but there are a few who don’t want the trail built – they want the railroad tracks to remain.”

According to Weingardt, the overall response to the creation of the trail has been overwhelmingly positive though, and most of those who have voiced their complaints and concerns about it being built aren’t even from the Fishers community.

The first order of business surrounding the trail’s construction will be its middle section, which will comprise of the downtown area, according to Weingardt. Weingardt also mentioned that the City of Indianapolis is even considering extending the trail further south in the future.

“My role is to give people a voice and allow them to express themselves as to what they want the trail to be,” Weingardt says. “I think this should be an opportunity people can openly discuss.”

Weingardt, who is a business owner with his own Certified Public Accountant (CPA) firm, said that his employees are excited to be able to finally enjoy this trail. And they’re not the only ones. Several schools near where the trail will be have classrooms working on Nickel Plate Trail projects with their students as part of its idea phase.

“There is a particular elementary school that’s along the trail, where the students and teachers are wanting to give their personal touch to the trail,” Weingardt says. “Even down toward the trail’s 106th street section, where eventually a humane society will be located, we’ll add things for it as well.”

There’s no doubt that the trail will overflow with residents and visitors once it’s built – and that’s exactly what Weingardt and the rest of the trail’s Master Planning Committee are hoping for.

“It’s not ‘hey, here’s your trail, see you later,’” he says. “We want people from all over Indiana and the Midwest to be attracted to it, and we want them to come and enjoy it.”

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