June 16, 2023

 University Heights Neighborhood Association

Meeting Minutes:  May 16, 2023. 7 pm.                                   

Location: UIndy Stierwalt Alumni House, 4021 Otterbein Ave. Indpls. 46227

Welcome/Call to Order. Richie Griffin, Co-Coordinator.

Secretary selected for this meeting:  Ruth Soper


  • ·         Richie Griffin. Co-Coordinator
  • ·         Richie announced that Rachel McElwain will not continue as Co-Coordinator
  • ·         Those present introduced themselves.

Review mtg minutes of March 21, 2023. Not available at this time.

Treasurer’s Report: Nigel Shoaff

  • ·         Balance in Indiana Members Credit Union account as of April 30, 2023: $1328.66
  • ·         The grant from Southeast Neighborhood Development (SEND) of $400, awarded last December, was used to cover expenses of Hobby Copy Printing: $385.20 for Spring Newsletter (paper and printing). 
  • ·         Nigel filed 990-N report to IRS to maintain our status as an active neighborhood association.
  • ·         Budget Review/discussion. No need for Budget. We have no regular expenditures.  Bylaws require we approve each expenditure at a mtg prior to incurring the expense.
  • ·         Discussion about cost of new yard signs for UHNA meeting.  We currently have six signs that are placed in different strategic locations in the neighborhood. Designated neighbors are responsible for placing them in strategic locations before each meeting. Richie suggested changes to the design, i.e. add QR code and make them black print on yellow sign. Ruth Soper will investigate the cost of 10 new signs at Hobby Copy Printing and Design.


New Business

UIndy Update: Andy Kocher. VP of Corporate and Community Partnerships

  • ·         New President, Dr Tanuja Singh, begins July 1, 2023
  • ·         1,400 graduates at Commencement on May 6,2023.
  • ·         Spring Ball Committee meetings to ensure students are respectful when assembling, seemed to have worked.  Let Andy know if there are any other comments or neighborhood incidents. April 26 was the annual Spring game.
  • ·         Grant available from Eli Lilly Foundation for College and Community Collaboration.  UIndy is one of the eligible Indiana universities. UIndy received the $250,000 planning grant. Plan to apply for competitive grant for up to $25 million. Lilly contributes 30%. University responsible for rest.
  • ·         Conversation continues with Dr Bill Murphy of Indianapolis Public Schools and officials of Adelante Schools about the best use of Raymond Brandes Elementary, IPS #65.

Construction Updates Rethink 65/70 Project. Bruce Colville.  Bridge, sidewalks, timeframe upcoming

  • ·         The Rethink project has a new vision for our highway system in Indianapolis.  Evaluate reconnection of neighborhoods divided by I-65/I-70 Inner Loop
  • ·         Restore historic property. Pull back the bridge widening project.
  • ·         Environmental Study coming
  • ·         Raymond St intersection needs attention.
  • ·         Underpasses are dirty and unsafe i.e., Troy Ave.
  • ·         Planning for the new Hanna Ave Bridge will continue into next year. Plan to connect Hanna to Lick Creek Greenway. Make sure it is up to code with sidewalks, etc.
  • ·         Kristin Jones, City-County Councilor, is on the DPW Council Committee if we need consultation.

Emma Donnan School Update: Leah Kurzar, Director of Engagement.

  • ·         Eighty families attended the Stronger Together event last weekend.
  • ·         Twenty UIndy students partnered with Emma Donnan this year.
  • ·         Scholar Ambassadors set up a community food box near the front door of the school.
  • ·         Teen Works Program for K-8 begins in June.
  • ·         IPS gave approval to increase our bus service zone to all K-8 students living in it.

Block Captains: Richie

  • ·         From his history with other organizations, Richie suggests a good way to get people involved is to give them a task. Being a block captain gives people ownership. Their role is to stay in contact with neighbors on their block to identify issues and share ideas with leadership/neighbors.

Social Media Accounts/Webpage: Richie

  • ·         Our website needs to be updated and improved. 
  • ·         Our Facebook (Karen Barten) and Instagram (Rachel McElwain) accounts could be combined.

Bylaws:  Richie

  • ·         Our Bylaws need to be updated to reflect how we operate.  Suggest a Bylaw Committee.
  • ·         Greta Pennell commented she agrees we need to update our Bylaws. We could archive our meeting minutes on the website.

Committees:  None specifically outlined at this meeting. Need further discussion.

 Summer Events:

  • ·         Have a Picnic in the Park to celebrate 10 years since we established our University Heights Community Park at Edwards and Mathews.

Block Parties: Not discussed at this meeting. Need further discussion.

Board Members: Richie

  • ·         If we had a UHNA Board they could meet between meetings to discuss neighborhood business that needs to be acted upon more often than every other month at a neighborhood meeting.

University Heights Community Park: Jim Pennell

  • ·         Need to reestablish the Park Committee to review guidelines and increase awareness.
  • ·         Jim has notes from 2011 when the committee was established.
  • ·         The committee will re-establish rules and decide on uses for the park. The original objective was to have a nature park with native trees and plants donated by Keep Indianapolis Beautiful (KIB).
  • ·         Rachel McElwain wrote a grant for dollars from INRC (Indianapolis Neighborhood Resource Center) to purchase three picnic tables and solar lights for the park shelter as well as new benches for under trees.

Old Business

  • ·         University Heights Community Park Clean-up on April 29 went well. Thanks to neighbors, UIndy students/faculty, and KIB volunteers who participated.

Additional Information

  • ·         Our new area 3 Mayor’s Neighborhood Advocate attended and introduced herself.  She is available to help with any neighborhood projects or issues.  Jenny Menelas, Phone:  317-327-5110, Mobile, 317-429-7807, E-mail, jenny.menelas@indy.gov

Meeting adjourned approximately 8:30p.

Next Meeting:  July 18, 2023, 7-8 pm. UIndy Stierwalt Alumni House.


Respectfully submitted: Ruth Soper. June 16, 2023                                        



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