DTH Receives OCRA Grant, Contribution from Vigo County Parks, Rose-Hulman Students
Terre Haute, Ind. – Downtown Terre Haute is one of 13 Indiana communities to receive grant funding through the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs. The money comes from the Quick Impact Pacebased Grant to support quality of place initiatives.
The Chamber of Commerce Foundation, which supports many DTH efforts, was awarded $4,995 to fund the creation of eight custom bike racks throughout downtown, which will feature art panels signifying the city as the official birthplace of the Coca-Cola Bottle. The racks will also support the Indiana State University’s bike share program. The initiative is also a partnership with the Vigo County Parks and Recreation Department, which will provide 20 hours of bike safety education during monthly First Friday events.
“We are thrilled to see more bicycles in downtown Terre Haute and in the surrounding community,’ says Vigo County Parks and Recreation Department Director Kara Kish. “Bicycle racks and additional biking amenities in our downtown will help transform our urban center from auto-centric environment to bike friendly community.”
The City of Terre Haute will donate time and supplies for the bike rack installations.
The funding is doubly exciting for the Terre Haute community, as students from a grant writing course at Rose-Human Institute of Technology prepared the grant research and application as part of the student’s coursework.
“Our partnership with the students at Rose-Hulman was ideal,” says DTH Coordinator Stephanie Pence. “It was a perfect grant for them to hone their skills on that will leave a lasting impression on downtown while also learning some of Terre Haute’s history.”
Pence worked alongside RHIT Assistant Professor of English Dr. Sarah Summers to guide students through the process and gain unique perspectives on the project.
Trey Wurtz, a freshman at the time, says the assignment not only gave him insight into the steps it takes to get a project off the ground, but the Cold Spring, Kentucky native also says writing the grant gave him a better appreciation of Terre Haute.
“I am definitely a little bit close to the Terre Haute community,” he says. “Next year when I am driving through the city and see people using the bike racks I will know that I had a hand in making that happen.”
This is the second year for the competitive matching grant program designed to fund placemaking and transformational projects that spark community-wide conversations and creativity.
“This grant rewards creativity, ingenuity and collaboration with the end result leaving a lasting impression on communities and the Hoosiers who live there for years to come,” said Jodi Golden, Executive Director of OCRA. “These projects will help build stronger communities and enhance the distinctive character of local Indiana places for positive outcomes.
The 13 projects that received grants were selected from the 38 submitted applications and will receive grant funds ranging from $2,500 to $5,000.
For more information, visit www.in.gov/ocra/quipgrant.htm.