When Mark Miles, president of the Indianapolis Super Bowl Bid Committee, went before the NFL on May 20, 2008, he laid before them an impressive case for why Indianapolis should win as host of Super Bowl 2012, not the least of which was a fighting little community on Indianapolis’ Near Eastside that was trying to pull itself out of a decades-long economic slump. At Miles’ side was Indianapolis Public School Superintendant Eugene White, who had a particular interest in Indianapolis’ selection for the Super Bowl.
White pitched the idea that the NFL’s annual $1 million grant to help start a Youth Education Town (YET) for at-risk youth in the designated Super Bowl host city should be directed toward building a community center on Indianapolis’ historic Arsenal Tech High School campus. Originally, a civil war arsenal compound, Arsenal Tech is one of the key landmarks of the Near Eastside.
White’s suggestion helped seal the deal for Indianapolis, and today the high school is watching a 27,000-square-foot Chase Near Eastside Legacy Center take shape on its campus. The $11.2 million center will feature a state of the art fitness center, high-tech classrooms and media studio, an educational kitchen, a garden, and a greenhouse.
To pull off such extensive services, the key stakeholder—the John H. Boner Community Center—will partner with a range of service providers:
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