Road Trips

Work in progress: Kirklin’s streetscape, on Indiana’s Michigan Road

Friday I had most of the day off, so I went for a drive up the Michigan Road. I’d heard that a new streetscape was being built in tiny Kirklin, so I stopped to see the progress.

Kirklin streetscape project
Kirklin streetscape project
Kirklin streetscape project
Kirklin streetscape project

The new sidewalks even extend around the corners, for about a block.

Kirklin streetscape project

When I first visited Kirklin, while surveying the Michigan Road in 2008, several shop owners stopped me to find out why I was photographing their town. When I explained, they all lamented that despite being only about 45 minutes north of Indianapolis, they seldom got visitors from there, and they were all barely getting by in their shops.

Many of Kirklin’s builidngs were in dilapidated condition then. In the intervening years, many have been renovated and filled with antique and arty-crafty shops. Most of them are open only on the weekends. But there’s critical mass in Kirklin now, where there wasn’t in 2008. It’s worth the Saturday or Sunday drive to spend a couple hours looking through these shops and perhaps getting a bite in one of the restaurants.

The new streetscape will only enhance Kirklin’s appeal. Bravo to them.

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5 thoughts on “Work in progress: Kirklin’s streetscape, on Indiana’s Michigan Road

  1. I was about to say I hope they preserve the brick road surface in your last photograph. But then I saw that the concrete gutter unit was about 2 or 3 inches higher, which suggests they will pour asphalt. What a shame. Please, tell me that I’m wrong.

    • They removed a previous asphalt surface to arrive at those bricks. Here’s a 2018 photo and then a 2021 photo down this same street (though the 2021 photo is from further back).

      https://www.flickr.com/photos/mobilene/46491671052/
      https://www.flickr.com/photos/mobilene/51179329743/

      I have to assume that they needed to take the asphalt surface off as part of the streetscape project and will put a new one down at the end.

      I’ve thought it weird for years that Kirklin’s one stoplight is one block south of the intersection of the Michigan Road with another state highway. This brick-surfaced street makes me think that perhaps the state highway or its predecessor used to come up this street, and was realigned at some point to the north.

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