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Near Eastside Indianapolis


Located 5 miles from the city center, the near Eastside of Indianapolis is a geographical area of increased economic hardship, crime, poor birth outcomes, and racial disparities in perinatal health.  Despite these challenges, the near Eastside is in the midst of a grassroots-led resurgence, the result of community-driven, long-range planning efforts focused on transforming the neighborhoods east of downtown Indianapolis.  Building on past planning efforts, most notably the Near Eastside Quality of Life Plan and the IndyEast Promise Zone, the Best Babies Zone (BBZ) Near Eastside will grow with the support of the BBZ Technical Assistance Center (TAC) funded by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.


BBZ Near Eastside is co-led by the Department of Pediatrics, Indiana University School of Medicine and the John Boner Neighborhood Centers.  Community residents will be integral partners along with the zone capitalizing on existing relationships with numerous local community based organizations, county level organizations, and state level entities. Some of these include Riley Maternity and Newborn Health, IndyEast Promise Zone, Englewood Community Development, Indianapolis Office of Public Health and Safety, Marion County Health Department and the Indiana State Department of Health.


  • The Best Babies Zone TAC provides the expertise and structure needed so that the BBZ Near Eastside can link and unify the social movements and multi-sector initiatives in the community.
  • BBZ Near Eastside will continue to incorporate an innovative quality improvement framework into community-driven development.
  • BBZ Near Eastside envisions a neighborhood progress chart to report progress and findings, as well as receive feedback from engaged residents.
  • BBZ Near Eastside will develop consistent and standardized methodologies for data collection and reporting and will work with the City of Indianapolis to further pursue the medium-term goal of real-time data analytics.