Monroe County Timeline

Most Significant Events Matching "parking meters"

First IU football game at Jordan Field
1897, Sep
After purchasing additional acreage from the Moses Dunn family, Professor John W. Newsom is charged with building an athletic field for football and baseball. The site is now the parking lot for the Indiana Memorial Union.
Source: J. Terry Clapacs, Indiana University Bloomington: America's Legacy Campus (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2017), 385.
Referendum held on hitch racks
1908, Nov
In an election a question is raised to citizens concerning the removal of the hitch racks from the new courthouse. The people vote in favor of restoring the rack for convenience of their downtown business parking. This goes against the recommendations of Dr. J. N. Hurdy, secretary of the State Board of Health, who states the old situation was unsanitary and unpleasant to view and navigate around.
Source: Penelope Mathiesen, "Hitch Racks: Parking on the Square a Hot Topic in 1908 Election," The Monroe County Historian, October 1, 2008, 8.
Number of cars grows
Showers Brothers Company estimates that the size of their parking lot will need more spaces due to the prosperity of their employees.
Source: "Numerous cars tell story of prosperity: Additional parking space is found necessary," Shop Notes, April 4, 1925, 8. more...
City votes for water meters
1930, Jun 18
City council votes to purchase and install a water meter system.
Source: "Chronology of Events in 1930," Evening World, January 1, 1931.
Council passes ordinance
1936, Dec 15
City council passes a traffic ordinance aimed at stopping reckless driving, facilitating parking, and making streets safer for motorists and pedestrians.
Source: "A Last Look at 1936 - In Pictures and in Paragraphs," Evening World, January 1, 1937, 8.
New traffic ordinance passed
1936, Dec 15
The city council passes a new traffic ordinance designed to curb reckless driving, facilitate parking and make the city streets safer for motorist and pedestrians.
Source: "A Last Look: In Pictures and in Paragraphs," Evening World, January 1, 1937.
Council asked to pass parking ordinance
1938, Mar 2
H. E. Scoonvoer of the traffic division in the Indiana State Highway Commission asks the Bloomington City Council to pass an ordinance to restrict parking on the streets adjacent to the state highways.
Source: "Daily March of Events Chronicled Through 1938 in Review," The Evening World, Bloomington, Indiana, December 31, 1938, 3.
Flat parking begins
1938, Apr 15
Flat parking on Walnut Street goes into effect.
Source: "Daily March of Events Chronicled Through 1938 in Review," The Evening World, Bloomington, Indiana, December 31, 1938, 3.
No parking
1940, Feb 7
The traffic department of the State Highway Department bans all parking on East Third Street.
Source: "1940 Chronology," Evening World, December 31, 1940.
Park planned
1940, Nov 21
A park including shelter houses, stoves, paths, a wading pool, and a parking lot is planned by the City Park Board and a landscape artist. The park is meant to be placed at the "triangle" formed by Seventeenth Street, College Avenue and Walnut Street.
Source: "Triangle North of City Will Be Transformed Into Park," Evening World, November 21, 1940.
Parking meters installed
1946, May 31
City of Bloomington announces that 310 parking meters are in operation as of 8AM today and at the same time police will patrolling the units and issuing tickets to violators. The meters provide one hour's parking for 5 cents. The city hopes to bring in revenue of at least $80 day. Fines for violators will be $1.00.
Source: "New Parking Meters Open," The World Telephone, May 31, 1946.
Plane set to land on highway
1951, Jul 3
Bud Woodburn, commander of the local Civil Air Patrol (CAP), announces plans to land a PT-17 airplane on north highway 37. The plane will then be towed into the city by a jeep and used as the CAP's float in the Legion Day Parade. Woodburn assures that all legal aspects have been cleared. The only uncertainty is whether parade parking will be along College Avenue. In this event, the plane's wings will not be able to make it through. Either way, the CAP cadets will march in the parade.
Source: Herald Telephone, July 3, 1951.
672 parking meters counted
1951, Aug 6
There are now 672 parking meters in Bloomington, 78 having been removed to permit increasing the length of parking spaces.
Source: Bennett P. Reed, "Sands Of Time," Daily Herald Telephone, August 6, 1964.
Old school set to become parking lot
1952, Jul 22
City council approves plans to raze Central School building in order to convert it to a parking lot for the general public. The votes in agreement are unanimous.
Source: "Central School To Be Razed For Parking," Daily Herald Telephone, July 23, 1952, A, 1. more...
Old Central to become parking lot
1953, Jan 9
It is announced that the Central School building (established in 1873) is scheduled to be dismantled in order to make a municipal parking lot.
Source: "School of Generations: Historic Old Central Goes Down," Star-Courier, January 9, 1953.
Chamber looks for parking sites
1955, Sep 27
A committee is assigned by the Retail Merchants Division of the Chamber of Commerce to find options on potential off street parking to relieve the traffic congestion in downtown Bloomington. Robert Allen, chairman of a division committee assigned to solve the parking problem, names representatives of the four Bloomington banks, attorney Calroy Baker, Merritt Calvert, Lane Wells and Mayor Emmet Kelly to the group.
Source: "C.C. Seeks Sites for Park Lots," Herald Telephone, September 27, 1955.
Concerns expressed about limited parking
1955, Oct 5
The Rotary Club hears from Frank E. Horak Jr., who describes the city's parking dilemma as possible loss of taxation. Horack states the traffic problem is forcing de-centralization of retail stores, which eventually could result in shopping centers springing up outside the city limits. Such centers would not be subject to city taxes, although they would still be receiving city services such as water and fire protection.
Source: "Parking Lack Problem For Every Citizen," Herald Telephone, October 5, 1955.
Site chosen for parking lot
1955, Nov 14
The City Board of Works accepts a report and recommendation from the Chamber of Commerce's parking study committee and directs the City Attorney to negotiate for land at 7th and Walnut to be used a parking area.
Source: "City Chooses Site For Parking Lot," Herald Telephone, November 15, 1955.
Harlos to construct giant shopping area
1957, Jan 31
Cecil E. Harlos of Harlos Construction Company announces that construction of a full city block shopping center with parking space for 140 cars will begin soon in the 200 block of S. College between 3rd and 4th Streets. Harlos expects to complete a modern air conditioned building for lease to the Kroger Grocery Company and the Haag drug Company of Indianapolis by October.
Source: "Harlos To Construct Giant Shopping Area in Downtown Block," Daily Herald Telephone, January 31, 1957.
Lots of stone
Bloomington Crushed Stone produces 7,100 tons of limestone in one day for the Indiana University field house parking lot.
Source: Sandy Smith, From the Ground Up: How Rocks, Roads, and Rogers Group Helped Build the Nation (Franklin, Tennessee: Providence House Publishers, 2008), 51.
Former post office site may be lost
1961, Apr 27
Government officials announce they are proceeding with plans to convert the former Post Office building here into a Federal Office Building, despite the local pressure to turn the site into a downtown parking lot. The US General Service Administration regional office in Chicago reports that the bids will be opened within six weeks and the contract for remodeling will be let by June 30.
Source: "Former Post Office Site Could Be Lost To City," Daily Herald Telephone, April 27, 1961.
Car thieves identified
1963, Apr 21
Police tag 18 juveniles, members of prominent Bloomington families, as juvenile delinquents in cases concerning the theft of about seven cars in two months for the purpose of joy riding. The 15 boys and 3 girls are residents of the eastern section of Bloomington and are children of doctors and builders. Ranging from 13 to 15 years, the children are said to have stolen cars from parking garages and used them to joy ride then returned them to the original parking spots.
Source: "'Joy Riding' Teenagers From Prominent Families," Daily Herald Telephone, April 21, 1963.
Police building site set
1963, Jun 12
Mayor Mary Alice Dunlap announces that a new police headquarters will be built on 3rd St. park land instead of the city parking lot on S. College. The change in site for the $300,000 building was made so that future growth on the downtown area will not be hampered.
Source: "Police Site Changed," Daily Herald Telephone, June 12, 1963.
City purchases parking lot
1963, Jul 16
An ordinance authorizing purchase of a lot on E 3rd for the water department is read for the first time in City Council at its regular session. This is one of the two lots formerly thought to be necessary for erection of the proposed law enforcement building.
Source: "City Council Purchases Parking Lot," Daily Herald Telephone, July 17, 1963.
Parking fee eliminated at fair
1963, Jul 22
It is announced that parking fees at the Monroe County Fair will be eliminated next year as the result of action by the County Commissioners, who approve a direct $7,000 appropriation to the Fair Board on conditions that the 50 cent parking charge be dropped.
Source: "Parking Fee Eliminated For County Fair Goers," Daily Herald Telephone, July 22, 1963.
IU student escapes kidnapper
1963, Oct 15
A 20 year old IU senior is abducted at gun point from a crowded public grocery parking lot at 4PM by a 14 year old boy who hopped in the passenger seat of her car. Mrs. Bonnie Sclamberg drives into Greene County as she 'broke every law in the book' trying to attract the attention of police officers. She receives aid by deliberately stalling her car the junction of Indiana 57 and 67 and flagging down a motorist. The motorist, who is unaware the boy had a loaded gun, drives Sclamberg and the boy to the Reliable Body Shop, where she tells the workers to call the police. The boy is captured by troopers and is scheduled to be returned to Bloomington to juvenile authorities.
Source: "Coed Outwits Youth Who Kidnapped Her," Daily Herald Telephone, October 16, 1963.
Westinghouse strikes
1963, Nov 13
Night shift workers walk off their jobs at 12:01 a.m. at the Westinghouse Electric Corporation Plant here and immediately set up picket lines at the same time as Local 2031 of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers(IBEW) strike for what it termed "disciplinary action" against the firm. More than 300 union members involved in the walkout fail to show up for work this morning, as 50 to 60 picketers gather in the plant's parking lot entrances on Curry Pike.
Source: "Westinghouse Strikes," Daily Herald Telephone, November 13, 1963.
First black city worker hired
Mary Evelyn Terry Ice begins working as a parking meter technician for Bloomington. She becomes the first African-American employee for the city, working as Officer No. 302 for 27 years, which includes a time as supervisor for the division. H-T Reporter interviewed Mary in 1991. Photo 1943 Gothic Yearbook.
Source: "Mary Ice: Bloomington's first African-American employee," The Herald Times, February 3, 2011.
Indiana Hotel torn down
The Indiana Hotel, formerly the National Hotel among others, is demolished to create parking spaces for surrounding businesses. The hotel, probably built in the 1880s, served visitors to Bloomington and housed several businesses including Osborne Jewelers, Ye Olde Regulator, and Sullivan's.
Source: "Take A Last Look-- It's Coming Down," Herald Telephone, September 25, 1965. more... map
Water rate hike approved
1966, Apr 25
Public Service Commission of Indiana authorizes Bloomington to raise water rates. The order lowers the estimated cost of the city's waterworks expansion project. The commission also instructs the city to review Indiana University's water system with a fewer number of meters then presently used.
Source: "State O.K.'s Water Rate Hike Here," Daily Herald Telephone, April 25, 1966.
Downtown parking development announced
1970, Jan
Mayor John H. Hooker announces that 1970 will be the year of downtown parking development.
Source: "1970 A Year Of Triumph And Tragedy In Bloomington," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 31, 1970, 1.
City buys property for parking
1970, Jul 15
Bloomington makes the first purchase of property for the parking program; they purchase a half block on the northwest corner of Kirkwood and Grant.
Source: "1970 A Year Of Triumph And Tragedy In Bloomington," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 31, 1970, 2.
Downtown merchants plan parking spots
1971, Feb 2
Downtown merchants begin plans to provide their own near-the-square parking spots.
Source: "January, February- New County Year Dawns In Hope," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 29, 1971, 14.
$2.7 million parking plan
1971, Feb 11
The City Council and the Board of Works accepts a $2.7 million parking plan for the downtown area.
Source: "January, February- New County Year Dawns In Hope," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 29, 1971, 14.
City must re-bid
1971, Feb 26
Due to confusion regarding specifications, the city must re-bid on the demolition and clearing on the downtown parking garage, high-rise apartment, and east side fire station.
Source: "January, February- New County Year Dawns In Hope," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 29, 1971, 14.
High-rise parking facility proposed
1971, Mar 26
City officials propose a high-rise parking facility at the old county library site.
Source: "In March, Politicians Move To Center Stage," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 29, 1971, 15.
City council announces plans
1971, Apr 2
The City Council authorizes revamped central city parking and high-rise apartment planning. They also call for the investigation of animal control programs.
Source: "In March, Politicians Move To Center Stage," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 29, 1971, 15.
Engineering strike halts construction
1971, Apr 6
An engineering strike halts work on Indiana University's new parking garage, Bloomington Hospital remodeling, and the new north-side high school.
Source: "In March, Politicians Move To Center Stage," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 29, 1971, 15.
Weddle Brothers get contract
1971, Jun 12
Weddle Brothers Construction gets a contract for the city's proposed high-rise apartment and parking garage facility.
Source: "June, July: Trials Make The News," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 29, 1971, 16.
Council approves parking lot sale
1971, Sep 3
The City Council approves the sale of a downtown church's parking lot for the site of a high-rise apartment and parking facility.
Source: "August-October: Budgets, Elections, Trials In Local News," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 30, 1971, 20.
CDA chooses urban renewal site
1971, Oct 14
The Central Development Association chooses the half-block between 6th and 7th Streets on Morton Street as the site for the first federal urban renewal parking project.
Source: "August-October: Budgets, Elections, Trials In Local News," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 30, 1971, 20.
Airport expansion plans shared
1971, Oct 18
The Monroe Country Commissioners Board has heard the plans for the new Monroe County Airport Expansion. Plans include runway expansion; taxiway expansion; runway and taxiway lights; and an overlay to runways and taxiways and for the airplane parking to be expanded.
Source: Sandy Ellett, "Commissioners Hear Airport Expansion Plan," Herald Times, October 19, 1971.
Parking meters funds decrease
1972, Feb 28
Parking meter revenues continue to decrease at an alarming rate. The reason is speculated to be faulty meters that cannot be replaced due to a lack of funds to replace them.
Source: "'72 Big Year In Bloomington..Miller Dr. Among Top Issues," Daily Herald-Telephone, December 30, 1972, 2.
Petition begins to save old library
1973, Mar 16
Members of the Monroe County Historical Society announce that a petition is now circulating to gather a goal of 1,000 signatures in order to save the old Monroe County Public Library building (Sixth and Washington Streets) from being demolished to make way for a parking lot.
Source: "Petition to Save Library Readied," Courier-Tribune, March 16, 1973.
New Bookmobile introduced
1975, Nov 1
The Monroe County Public Library holds a ceremony in the library parking lot to "launch" the new Bookmobile.
Source: "Library Launches New Bookmobile," Ellettsville Journal, November 5, 1975.
YMCA breaks ground
1976, Sep
It is announced that a ground breaking ceremony for the $2.5 million permanent home of the YMCA is scheduled for 10:30 am Sunday, September 5th. Festivities will start with a fun run from the Bloomington High School South parking lot to the building site.
Source: "Ground breaking Sunday for YMCA," Herald Times, September 1, 1979.
Mayor announces plans for library
1976, Nov 4
Mayor Frank McCloskey announces that he would prefer to see the old Monroe County Public Library building (Sixth and Washington Streets) either sold or leveled to make way for a parking lot.
Source: Sherry Howman, "Mayor: Sell old library of level it," Indiana Daily Student, November 8, 1976.
Possible juvenile detention center building tour
1990, Jul 20
The Herald-Times announces that July 27 state correction officials will travel to Monroe County to examine sites for a proposed juvenile detention center. According to assistant chief probation officer Angela Parking, Deputy commissioner Chris DeBruyn and five other correction officials will accompany probation officers, judges, and county commissioners on a tour of at least three buildings around the county. The building they will tour are not released, but the proposal for the juvenile detention center (submitted July 11) asks for $500,000 to renovate an existing building and create a 20-bed facility.
Source: Andrew Welsh-Huggins, "State to check sites," The Herald Times, July 20, 1990, C, 1, 2.
Aircraft apron remodeled
The aircraft-parking apron is reconstructed and enlarged by 50%. New apron lighting is installed.
Source: Annual Report of the Monroe County Airport, 2017
Lease agreement is approved
The Board of Aviation Commissioners approves the lease agreement for 3.3 acres at the north end of the aircraft parking apron to allow for the construction of BMG Aviation Jet Center. When complete, this nearly 40,000 square foot facility will house BMG Aviation's FBO operation, flight training, and aircraft maintenance relocated from their current buildings near the ATCT.
Source: Annual Report of the Monroe County Airport, 2017

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