People’s Planning Academy

Planning involves the complex intersection of many different aspects of a community: land use, infrastructure, environmental issues, existing resident desires, the supply and demand for certain types of real estate, and more. It also has implications that are not always easy to see: impacts on human and environmental health, a community’s tax base and ability to provide high-quality public services, the ability of a place to evolve and retain its value, and the ability of our residents to access housing, jobs, education, and health care.

The People’s Planning Academy is a free training program consisting of 6 workshops that will provide participants with basic knowledge about city planning and the foundational goals that came from the Plan 2020 Bicentennial Agenda – to make Indianapolis healthier, more resilient, more inclusive, and more competitive. Participants will learn how planning can help us to achieve these goals. The Academy will also train participants on how to use the Land Use Pattern Book, which is the written component of the Marion County Land Use Plan. It outlines land use types and the conditions used to determine where different land uses are appropriate. Participants who complete the People’s Planning Academy will also be invited to join the Land Use Plan Stakeholder Committee during the mapping phase of the Plan. The program is open to all residents, property owners, or business owners in Marion County.

A Partnership Of

Supported By


Participants have the choice of two in-person tracks – 6 Thursday evenings or 3 longer Saturday morning sessions, as well as an online/Channel 16 track. The table below outlines the topics schedule for each of these tracks.  While registration for the in-person tracks is closed, the online track will be open through the end of the year.  Note that in order to graduate and be invited to join the Land Use Plan Stakeholder committee, you must register!  When each class is posted, we’ll notify you and also provide all the class materials in digital format!

Topic Thursday Track
Saturday Track
Online/ Channel 16 Track
Planning 101 10/5 10/14 Online

Channel 16TV2: October 10, 12, 14 @ Midnight, 6am, Noon, and 6pm

Make Indy Healthy 10/12 Online

Channel 16TV2: October 17, 19, 21 @ Midnight, 6am, Noon, and 6pm

Make Indy More Resilient 10/19 10/28 Online

Channel 16TV2: October 24, 26, 28 @ Midnight, 6am, Noon, and 6pm

Make Indy More Inclusive 10/26 Online

Channel 16TV2: October 31, Nov 2, 4 @ Midnight, 6am, Noon, and 6pm

Make Indy More Competitive 11/2 11/11 Online

Channel 16TV2: November 7, 9, 11 @ Midnight, 6am, Noon, and 6pm

Land Use Pattern Book Training 11/9 Online

Channel 16TV2: November 14, 16, 18 @ Midnight, 6am, Noon, and 6pm

Channel 16TV2 is available in Marion County on Comcast Channel 28, Spectrum Channel 17, and AT&T Channel 99.


All in-person sessions will take place at the Sol Center (home of the Indianapolis Neighborhood Resource Center) at 708 E. Michigan Street, although for GPS navigation purposes it’s best to use 501 Spring Street as the address.  IndyGo bus routes 3, 11, and 21 all pass within a block of the Sol Center, and there is a Blue Indy station two blocks to the north and south of Michigan Street along College Avenue.  Bike racks are also available.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to register?
Yes, registration is required as there are limited seats available for each session.  Registration is also required for the online/Channel 16 track.

What happens if seats are sold out?
We now have an online/Channel 16 track available with unlimited capacity!  Click here to learn more and register!

Do I have to bring my printed ticket to the event?
Registration is required, but you do not need to bring an actual ticket.

What are my transportation/parking options for getting to and from the event?
There is parking, bike racks, IndyGo bus routes, and BlueIndy car share stations at or near the location.  See the map to the left.

What can I bring into the event?
You can bring anything you’d like to take notes with, including tablet or laptop computers (WIFI is available). If you’re attending a Thursday evening class, you’re also welcome to bring a brown-bag dinner.

Can I bring my children?
Yes! You’re welcome to sign up your older kids as participants in the Academy. For younger children, we are working on free, on-site childcare. If you want to take advantage of childcare, please indicate this need on the registration form.

How can I contact the organizer with any questions?
Contact Jane Hughes, Community Engagement Specialist with the Department of Metropolitan Development, at [email protected] or 317-327-5150.