Indianapolis, Indiana, United States of America, North America

Founded: 1816;
Incorporated: 1847
Location: Central Indiana, United States, North America
Motto: Crossroads of America (state motto)
Flag: Blue field with white cross; in the center, a white star on a red circle represent the center of the city.
Flower: Peony (state flower)
Time Zone: 7 AM Eastern Standard Time (EST) = noon Greenwich Mean Time (GMT)
Ethnic Composition: White 77%, Black 21%, Hispanic origin 1%
Elevation: 219 m (717 ft) above sea level. The city is situated on level to gently rolling terrain.
Latitude and Longitude: 39°71'N, 86°09'W
Coastline: None
Climate: Temperate continental climate with precipitation evenly distributed throughout the year. Warm summers and cold winters that can be affected by blasts of polar air from the north.
Annual Mean Temperature: 11°C (52°F); January–2°C (28°F); July 24°C (75°F)
Seasonal Average Snowfall: 58 cm (23 in);
Average Annual Precipitation (rainfall and melted snow): 101.3 cm (39.9 in)
Government: Mayor and 29-member council
Weights and Measures: Standard U.S.
Monetary Units: Standard U.S.
Telephone Area Codes: 317
Postal Codes: 46201–46290

2. Getting There

Indianapolis is located east of the White River in central Indiana. It is the largest city in the United States that is not situated on the banks of a navigable body of water. Its major thoroughfare is Washington Street (I-40), which runs east-west through the city, as part of a larger grid pattern that governs the layout of the city's streets.


The Indianapolis metropolitan area is ringed by I-465, which has junctions with the three major highways that pass through the city: I-70 (east-west), I-69 (intersects from the northwest), and I-65 (northwest to southeast). Indianapolis has more interstate highways junctions than any other metropolitan area in the United States.

Bus and Railroad Service

Indiana is served by the Greyhound and Trailways bus lines. Both the bus station and the Amtrak train station are located in the renovated Union Station downtown on S. Illinois Street. Amtrak service is provided to Washington, D.C. and Chicago, with three weekly departures to each city.


Nearly eight million passengers a year use Indianapolis International Airport, which is located seven miles southwest of downtown Indianapolis. It is the largest U.S. airport managed by a private firm (the same company that runs London's Heathrow and Gatwick airports). Serving 18 airlines, it offers more than 175 daily departures to 76 different destinations. It is also a package-sorting hub for FedEx and a U.S. Postal Service hub as well.

Bus and Commuter Rail Service

The Indiana Public Transportation Corporation (METRO) operates 138 city buses and provides service to the disabled through the Metro Transit Open Door program. The base fare for local mass transit is 75 cents.


Walking tours are offered of the Mile Square area in the heart of downtown Indianapolis.

22. For Further Study


Office of the Mayor. [Online] Available (accessed October 14, 1999).

Official Website of the City of Indianapolis and Marion County, Indiana. [Online] Available (accessed October 14, 1999).

Government Offices

City Hall
200 E. Washington St.
Indianapolis, IN 46204
(317) 327-4348

Indianapolis Planning Division
200 E. Washington St.
Indianapolis, IN 46204
(317) 327-5151

Mayor's Office
200 E. Washington St.
Indianapolis, IN 46204
(317) 327-3601

Tourist and Convention Bureaus

Indiana Convention Center & RCA Dome
100 S. Capitol Ave.
Indianapolis, IN 46225
(317) 262-3410

Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce
320 N Meridian St. Suite 200
Indianapolis, IN 46204
(317) 464-2200

Indianapolis Convention and
Visitors Association
200 S. Capitol Ave. 1 RCA Dome
Indianapolis, IN 46225
(317) 639-4282


Indianapolis Business Journal
41 E. Washington St., Suite 200
Indianapolis, IN 46204

Indianapolis Monthly
950 N. Meridian St. Suite 1200
Indianapolis, IN 46204

Indianapolis News
307 N. Pennsylvania St.
Indianapolis, IN 46204
(317) 633-1038

Indianapolis Star
307 N. Pennsylvania St.
Indianapolis, IN 46204
(317) 633-1240


Berry, S. L., and Jolene Phelps Ketzenberger. The Insiders' Guide to Greater Indianapolis. Indianapolis: Insiders' Publishing, 1997.

Bodenhamer, David J., and Robert G. Barrows, ed. The Encyclopedia of Indianapolis. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1994.

Bowers, Claude Gernade. Ed. Holman Hamilton and Gayle Thornbrough. Indianapolis in the "Gay Nineties": High School Diaries of Claude G. Bowers. Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Society, 1964.

Cameron, Layne Scott. Kidding Around Indianapolis: What to Do, Where to Go, and How to Have Fun in Indianapolis. Santa Fe, NM: John Muir Publications, 1997.

Cathcart, Charlotte . Indianapolis from Our Old Corner. Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Society, 1965 .

City-smart Guidebook. Indianapolis. Santa Fe, NM: John Muir Publications, 1997 .

Goldsmith, Stephen. The Twenty-first Century City: Resurrecting Urban America. Washington, D.C.: Regnery Pub.,1997.

Jones, Darryl. Indianapolis. [photographs]. Text by Howard Caldwell. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1990.

Kriplen, Nancy, and Margaret Winter. Exploring Indianapolis. 3rd. ed. Indianapolis: Lexicon, 1982.

Leary, Ed. Indianapolis: The Story of a City. Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill, 1971.