Middle Way House Wins Awards For Preservation and Revitalization

BY ELISABETH ANDREWS Middle Way House has long been in the business of restoration, as the organization has spent 40 years helping women put their lives back together following domestic abuse. Recently, however, its rebuilding efforts have also included a neglected section of near-downtown that was literally crumbling onto the sidewalk. Through the New Wings project, Middle Way has revitalized the old Coca-Cola Bottling Co. building and adjacent property on the corner of South Washington and East 3rd streets, earning two 2011 Bloomington awards: the Outstanding Preservation Project Award from Bloomington Restorations, Inc. and the Downtown Revitalization Award for Economic Restructuring and Design from Downtown Bloomington, Inc. The six-year project required $5 million in fundraising, an effort led by IU […]

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Community Kitchen: Helping to Feed Our Kids

BY ADAM KENT-ISAAC The Community Kitchen of Monroe County, founded in 1983 to combat hunger in Bloomington, is probably best known for its public dining room located at 917 S. Rogers St., where anyone can come and receive a free, nutritious meal, no questions asked. What some may not know is that the Kitchen has also been expanding its reach to distribute food to children in Bloomington’s communities. Case in point: the Summer Breakfast Program. “In the summer, when school’s out, we try to get nutrition to kids wherever they are,” says Vicki Pierce, executive director of the Kitchen. “We know that kids from low-income areas have a transportation barrier to coming to our facilities—someone would have to drive them […]

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Bike Project Offers Help and Free Bikes

BY CASSANDRA ORTON Want to build your own bike? How about for free? That can happen at the Bloomington Community Bike Project, a nonprofit, volunteer-run bike shop housed in a bright orange garage at the corner of West 7th and North Madison streets. “We provide low- to no-cost transportation alternatives to anyone who desires bicycles,” says Michael Lindeau, bookkeeper and key master. The Bike Project, which is sponsored by the Center for Sustainable Living, empowers members of the community by teaching them to build and fix their own bikes. According to Lindeau, the project staff has three main purposes: to manage the Earn a Bike program, to provide high-quality tools for bicyclists to use, and to sell refurbished bikes. To […]

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B-town’s Bus System Is the Best! Bloomington Transit Wins Top Award

BY NANCY HILLER Amid the glorious sensory overload that is Bloomington in the spring, you may not have noticed the posters on Bloomington Transit buses announcing “North America’s Best Public Transportation System 2010.” Sounds impressive. And it is. Two years ago the American Public Transportation Association, a nonprofit trade organization devoted to strengthening and improving public transportation systems across the U.S. and Canada, awarded Bloomington Transit (BT) top honors in the Small Transit System category of under 4,000,000 passenger trips per year. The award, described by BT General Manager Lewis May as “the most prestigious in our industry,” recognizes the company’s performance in a variety of areas. Particularly notable is the company’s progressive approach to customer service. BT operates nine […]

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