Some things have changed and some things continue to be popular in a city growing as fast as Westfield and if you are paying attention we have alot of both going on, from a redevelopment standpoint.  We have new building PUD’s being approved, maybe at a snails pace but they are and we also have sites being improved and reused in the Grand Junction Plaza area.  Some would argue we need more or less density or that we need more or have enough restaurants, I am obviously on the side of more is better of course but understand both sides.  As I do my multiple drives daily through our downtown and dream of what could go on each individual parcel or think of a neat project that could reinvigorate an intersection I get excited when I see some really cool plans and projects put before us.  So here is a list of 3 things that I like happening in our downtown that pertain to development and future growth. 

  1.  Multifamily – Nothing brings energy to a downtown like market rate apartment projects.  The residents tend to spend more money nearby and create a vibrance that only exists in an apartment development.   Young professionals, empty nesters, retirees, new hires and seasonal workers are all part of the community that make these great for our cities and without them we remain inactive the better part of the day.  Many cities in our region are figuring out ways to wedge multifamily developments in open spaces as infill as they create a high density and very vibrant place for locals to be excited about.  So bring on the apartments and keep the new ones coming.  We are generations away from having too many. 
  2.    Trail activity – The trails in Westfield are awesome and in particular the Midland Trace Trail that weaves East and West from Noblesville to currently Ditch Rd, but plans for beyond.  The Midland Trace is a smooth paved path that is perfect for biking, jogging and walking the dog.  Some areas are even allowing golf carts but you have to watch for signage to do that.  When you can ride your bike from your house on Carey Rd for instance into our downtown for lunch or dinner its such a great experience.  When I describe the trail to new residents or someone looking to move a business here they many times are surprised at its completeness but also excited to jump on it for the first time.  Often I will hear shortly after how much they enjoyed the newly discovered trail since our talk.  One of the best parts of the trails is how nice they look and well maintained they are for our enjoyment.  Rarely are they trashy or in disrepair and if you ride through the downtown or south along Union St you get to see Asa Bales Park or Cool Creek Park.  I would encourage anyone that has not been on the trails to take some time and enjoy a section.  Its free and its a lot of fun.    
  3. Gluten-free Options – Ok this is off topic but since its my blog post I can write it.  In Westfield we are beginning to see some awesome Gluten-free and beyond options.  Greek’s Pizzeria on Park St has what I believe to be the best GF pizza crust around.  Its thin, flakey and crisp which is a far cry from the cauliflower chewy ones out there.  Field Brewing has hands down the best GF bun option and its perfect with their signature Field Burger.  Carey Tavern has unbreaded wings that they cook perfectly if you can taste them beyond the smoke.  The Italian House on Park has GF pasta and its best in the spicy sausage dish they serve.  And lastly the italian beef bowl at Portillo’s is just amazing.  I put it on rice but as a stand alone its one of the perfect treats for a meal.  Spicy peppers and you can’t go wrong.  

So as we celebrate another great year in our own little promised land I want to celebrate some of the cool things I am excited about and enjoy seeing evolve.  I think we have more then our share of things to be happy and grateful for in this community and look forward to see how it serves our children and generations after.