No Mean City

Best-selling author and marketing wizard Seth Godin writes, “The realest thing in our lives are the stories we invent.” What’s true for people and businesses is especially true for cities.

What’s Indy’s story? A group of business and nonprofit leaders have joined the community advocacy group IndyHub to seek answers to that question with the establishment of No Mean City. IndyHub Executive Director Molly Chavers said the effort ties in nicely with the group’s mission to attract, engage, and motivate 20- and 30-somethings. “How do we talk about our city so that people choose Indy?” she asked. “We want to give our top CEOs talking points and we want our residents to talk about our city.” After interviewing more than 150 community members about ways Indy could attract population, Chavers said the group found inspiration from a quote by former Mayor Charles Bookwalter that is etched on the cornerstone of the former City Hall at Alabama and Ohio Streets downtown: “I am myself a citizen of no mean city.”

The talking points will be delivered via an active social media push of stories about the people, places, and things that make Indianapolis anything but average. With the support of Indy Chamber, Central Indiana Community Foundation, and Metropolitan Indianapolis Board of Realtors, No Mean City’s impressive website is populated with more than just feel-good stories and videos. By answering a series of three questions, users can create a profile that offers a range of options in Indy: where to buy the kind of home you like, near the kind of amenities you need, and including an exhaustive list of educational options the city has to offer to parents. The city is broken into 25 geographic districts, of which only two are named: Downtown and Midtown.