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(And Travel/Hotel Info - See Below) 

Please join us in beautiful Carmel!

Be part of our 2021 conference in the state-of-the-art Palladium at The Center for the Performing Arts, our venue in Carmel, Indiana, USA (pictured in the photo above). The city is just outside of Indianapolis, 180 miles southeast of Chicago and easily accessible by air. (Short non-stop flights are available from New York, Washington, Chicago and other cities.) Carmel is an extraordinary showcase of transformation from a former sprawling suburb to an increasingly diverse, walkable town of livable neighborhoods. We'll share effective tools and lessons from this and other successful transformations around the USA and internationally, with leading mayors, planners, designers, economic development experts, developers, researchers, NGO heads, and many others.  And we'll study Carmel's lessons, with in-depth sessions, tours, and enjoyable evenings out to mix with other conference-goers!


A special invitation from Mayor Jim Brainard of Carmel
(Long-time member of the IMCL Board of Stewards) 

                                                    Dear conference attendees and interested parties:

                                                    I'm   excited  to  invite  you  to  the  City of Carmel  this year for the 57th International 

                                                    Making Cities  Livable  conference  to  see  how  we  have  created  a  vibrant city  by 

                                                    transforming  a  car suburb into a more  walkable community.   At past Livable Cities

                                                    conferences,   I  have  learned  from  the  best  in  the  world  about  creating   distinct

                                                    mixed  use,  human  scale  areas  to  which  people  are  drawn and in which they can

thrive. As you walk or bike through our central core, you will see many of the principles in action at our new downtown City Center, the thriving Arts & Design District and Midtown.

At the Livable Cities conference in Carmel, you will have the opportunity to discuss a wide variety of strategies for cities whether large or small, whether urban or rural, designed to improve how your residents, businesses and visitors interact. Thought provoking discussions and great visuals help convey how to better plan public spaces, transportation patterns and other city design tools to help your city compete among the best.

This conference brings together a blend of academic leaders, elected officials, city planners and engineers from the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, Egypt, Canada and across the United States. Attendees will have the unparalleled opportunity to hear from all corners of the globe and have projects critiqued during the competition segment of the conference.

The Livable Cities conference also allows plenty of time for attendees to discuss their ideas and current projects or issues with others and get helpful feedback. In addition, we'll make sure you get out and about to explore all that Central Indiana has to offer. We know that you will find the blend of our hospitality and culture a welcome surprise. I look forward to seeing you in June of 2021 in Carmel, Indiana.

Very truly yours,

Jim Brainard
Mayor, City of Carmel, IN

Mayor Latest headshot... crop.jpeg
Carmel Center for the Performing Arts

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1 Carter Green

Carmel, Indiana 46032


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Hotels in Carmel

Our conference headquarters, registration, entry, and main accommodation is the beautiful new Hotel Carmichael, located right next to the spectacular Palladium concert hall where the sessions will take place.  You can learn more about Hotel Carmichael here. We have a block of rooms at a discount rate for the conference, To register, call them at +1 317-688-1700 and tell them you have registered for the conference and want the conference rate.  Feel free also to email us for additional information or assistance at  

There are a number of other good hotel options a short distance away from the Palladium (approx. 2 miles, 10 minutes by bike). We will have a daily shuttle bus from them to and back from the venue, as well as bike rentals, and taxi/Uber etc. There is also free parking at the conference venue. You can contact the hotels directly, or email  (See map below.)

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Arriving in Carmel by Air:

The Indianapolis International Airport, a major midwest hub (IND), is served by regular direct flights from all over the US as well as Canada, Mexico and Europe.  The airport is located off I-70 just five minutes west of the I-465 loop and approximately 35 minutes from downtown Carmel. To reach Guest Services at IND call 317-487-7243 or stop by the Guest Services desk which is located in the main area of the airport (Civic Plaza), just beyond the Ticketing Hall.

Indianapolis International Airport
7800 Col. H. Weir Cook Memorial Drive
Indianapolis, IN 46241


Arriving in Carmel by Train:

Indianapolis is located on the Amtrak Cardinal line from Chicago to New York.  Additional stops include Washington D.C., Cincinnati, Milwaukee and Minneapolis-St. Paul, offering scenic side trips before or after the IMCL conference. Enjoy the splendor of Union Station, a fine Richardsonian Romanesque structure built in 1888. Carmel is 30 minutes by car from the station. 

Amtrak Union Station
350 South Illinois Street
Indianapolis, IN 46225

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Ground Transportation - Airport:

Car Rental

IND offers eight car rental options at the Ground Transportation Center, located on the first floor of the Terminal Garage. Off-airport car rental companies are also available.  CAR RENTAL 

Taxi Service

Taxi service is available at the curb on the lower level of the terminal just outside of Baggage Claim. There is a $15 minimum charge for all fares from the airport, regardless of distance. TAXI SERVICE 

Uber & Lyft

Uber and Lyft services are available from the airport to your selected destination. When using these services for pick-up, exit the terminal to the Ground Transportation Center on the first floor of the Terminal Garage. UBER & LYFT​ 

Black Car Service

Shared ride and personal luxury limousine services are available in the Ground Transportation Center, located on the first floor of the garage as you exit the terminal.  BLACK CAR SERVICE 

Private Car Service

Luxury Worldwide Transportation services provide turnkey transportation services including airport transfers.

Ground Transportation - Train Station

Union Station Indianapolis has a similar offering of taxi, Uber, Lyft, and bus options.  There are car rental agencies in nearby downtown locations.  For more information see the website. 

Getting around Carmel

If you are staying in the Hotel Carmichael, everything is within easy walking distance. Bike rentals will also be available - contact us for details.  There will also be a shuttle bus running between the conference venue and the other hotels in the area and stopping at nearby attractions, running every hour during the conference. There is also free parking at the conference venue if you have a car - although we encourage you to bike or shuttle, and see the city! 

Things to see and do in the area

There are many additional activities in the immediate vicinity of Carmel, and in the central Indiana region. For example, downtown Indianapolis offers a wealth of sites, and just an hour south is the remarkable town of Columbus, Indiana, site of an impressive collection of 20th Century art and architecture. The spectacular historic towns of French Lick and West Baden are also just over two hours to the south.  South Bend and Notre Dame University are also two hours to the north. For travel and tourism information in the Carmel area, check out the Visit Hamilton County website, or the page dedicated for information about the City of Carmel, especially for local visitor information.


ABOVE, some of the amazing places in and around Carmel.  (L-R): Over-the-Rhine Neighborhood of Cincinnati; aerial view of Madison, Indiana; streetcars and public spaces in Over-the-Rhine; Indianapolis' grand Union Station. 



ABOVE, more of the beautiful cities and towns of the region that are fascinating to explore. (L-R): The main street through French Lick and West Baden; a sculpture in front of an I.M. Pei building in Columbus, Indiana; the town of Anderson, Indiana,  like many towns in the area, with a beautiful main street; and the amazing West Baden Springs Hotel, a National Historic Landmark built in 1902, and until 1913 the largest dome in the world.  

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