The Indianapolis Bar Association on Wednesday voted to give encouraging yet conditional support to Mayor Greg Ballard’s recent proposal to construct a new criminal justice center complex, according to a statement issued Thursday.
The 29-member IndyBar board of directors applauded city efforts to prioritize creation of safe and adequate justice facilities. The IndyBar has been working for more than a decade to focus attention on the need to overhaul the existing judicial resources, noting safety concerns and other inadequacies. For years, IndyBar has spearheaded efforts to make a new justice center a reality, touting the long-term benefits that would be realized by not only the people involved in the legal system but also the community as a whole.
Although the IndyBar’s governing body fully endorsed the concept of a new justice center, the board qualified its support, noting several plan details had yet to be finalized. The IndyBar favors a centrally located downtown site. The mayor’s announced preferred location of the former GM Stamping Plant is a good option if other downtown sites are unworkable, the association said.
However, the board also indicated that some of the other proposed locations that had originally been mentioned, including a property near Indianapolis International Airport, would not be supported by the association for a variety of reasons. The board suggested that any plan would need to include a comprehensive vision for the future of the civil courts.
The board stated it would need to review more detail concerning the overall project, including facility design and functionality, before it could unconditionally endorse the project in its entirety.
“The Indianapolis Bar Association looks forward to working with the mayor’s office, the judiciary, the City-County Council and all other stakeholders in developing a first class judicial facility,” the statement said.
More from IndyBar concerning the topic can be found at www.indyjusticecenter.org.