CICF News / 2011 / March / News Post
March 9, 2011
Monument Circle Idea Competition launches today

Advisory Council and partners seek local and international inspiration.
Submissions due by April 15, 2011

The Monument Circle Idea Competition is intended to bring ideas and inspire the community to envision Monument Circle’s future. As an “open ideas” competition, participants are invited to join a celebration of the Circle’s rich history, while appreciating the important role it continues to play in the lives of businesses, citizens and visitors alike. The goal of the competition is to generate creative concepts and ideas that maximize this already extraordinary space, and help envision its future. The Monument Circle Idea Competition encourages ideas about design as well as ideas about programming, land use and activities. Those interested in more information and entering officially can do so at In addition, those who simply want to make suggestions can post their comments on the web site.

Monument Circle Idea Competition partners include: The State of Indiana, City of Indianapolis, Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF), Indianapolis Downtown, Inc. (IDI), Monument Circle Idea Competition Advisory Council, Scoping Team and Circle stakeholders. The Monument Circle Idea Competition is a project of IDI and is funded from private donations only. The Monument Circle Idea Competition Advisory Council which includes co-chairs Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels, Mayor Greg Ballard, Brian Payne, president of CICF and Tamara Zahn, president of IDI, and representatives from the business, residential, civic, arts and design communities, oversee the Competition.

In October 2010, Indianapolis hosted the CEOs for Cities Livability Challenge. "The visiting national experts echoed what so many local leaders have expressed…Monument Circle is extraordinary and merits maximum attention, creativity and vision," said Brian Payne, CICF president. "These experts challenged Indianapolis to host the Monument Circle Idea Competition.”

A panel of judges will award First Prize of $5,000, Second Prize of $2,000 and Third Prize of $1,000. The adjudication will take place in Indianapolis in May. The top submissions will be displayed in an exhibit on Monument Circle June 17-26, 2011. Finally, a People’s Choice award of $1,000 will be made at the conclusion of the public exhibition this summer.

Monument Circle is the state’s most recognizable and visible public space, a sight and destination recognized around the world and home to a number of corporate, cultural and commercial entities. Indianapolis is sometimes known as “The Circle City,” courtesy of Monument Circle. Often referred to locally as simply the “Circle,” it lies at the heart of our state, city and Downtown.

"Monument Circle is where we gather to celebrate, commemorate and show our guests who and what we are. Indianapolis is host to visitors from around the country and the world," said Tamara Zahn, IDI president. "For these reasons and more, Monument Circle is an increasingly important destination and unique public space."

The State of Indiana owns and manages the Indiana Soldiers and Sailors Monument, the centerpiece of Monument Circle, through The Indiana War Memorials Commission. The City of Indianapolis owns and is responsible for the streets, sidewalks and alleys around Monument Circle beyond the bollards surrounding the Indiana Soldiers and Sailors Monument. In response to deteriorating infrastructure, The City of Indianapolis Department of Public Works (DPW) retained the team of Woolpert, Browning Day Mullins Dierdorf Architects and Eden Collaborative to conduct a scoping study as the first step of a longer planning and design process to prepare and maximize Monument Circle for the next 20-30 years. Key ideas generated from the competition will be considered to inform future planning.

Visit for more information or call 317.237.2222