Building Downtown

In 1986, Indianapolis developer Kenneth Puller proposed a grand hotel and apartment complex on the Downtown Canal. Full Story
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Jay

San Francisco, CA

#1 Jan 27, 2008
None of this will happen anytime soon. CRE is dead. Indy is over-hoteled already.

You want to gauge the future of downtown Indy, go look at 300 East Market Street, where MSA used to be. Still a parking lot after 6 years.

The Conrad only went up cause Bart Peterson gave $8.3 million to his cronies at Kite to build a 5 -er- 4 star hotel.
RickyBobby76

Evansville, IN

#2 Jan 27, 2008
The problem is money.

The developers want to charge Chicago prices. The only problem is companies don't pay Chicago salaries here, and Circle Center is no Michigan Ave.

If they want to make DT cool and hip, they need to make it cheap, at least initially.

Having a better school system would help too.
jeez

Michigan City, IN

#3 Jan 27, 2008
This is freakin' ridiculous. How many millionaires are there running around Indy looking for downtown condos? Not too many, I'd guess. What downtown needs is nice, somewhat upscale but AFFORDABLE housing to attract professionals.

People who want to live near downtown can't afford those outrageous prices - note how many of the already existing, recently built yuppie condos are still vacant.

“IPS Killed Westside Indy”

Since: Jan 08

Indianapolis

#4 Jan 27, 2008
RickyBobby76 wrote:
The problem is money.
The developers want to charge Chicago prices. The only problem is companies don't pay Chicago salaries here, and Circle Center is no Michigan Ave.
If they want to make DT cool and hip, they need to make it cheap, at least initially.
Having a better school system would help too.
Are you kidding me?? have you been to one of Chicago's schools that are DT?
I totally agree that IPS sucking, but that's not whats going to bring people DT.
What is there to do---same restaurants as Castleton and Greenwood. Bars??---well not everyone over 30 enjoy's that atmosphere. Parks? no. Mall- Same as Castleton and Greenwood. Something should be done about the White River area....make it a river walk or a Shopping area(similiar to San Antonio). DO SOMETHING DIFFERENT.... not just Hotels to support Convention Center people. The one thing about those conventions........the people always leave.
Jay

San Francisco, CA

#5 Jan 27, 2008
Hear hear !

DT is dead as a doornail. Few really want to live there, or drive down there, hassle with parking (or hassle with a bus). The school system obviously does more harm than good. Gangs circle Circle Centre Mall demanding quarters.

The renaissance of the Old Northside chased out almost all the black people, but crime there is off the charts. It's so bad it's not even worth reporting every garage break in, IMPD can't do anything about it.
RickyBobby76 wrote:
The problem is money.
The developers want to charge Chicago prices. The only problem is companies don't pay Chicago salaries here, and Circle Center is no Michigan Ave.
If they want to make DT cool and hip, they need to make it cheap, at least initially.
Having a better school system would help too.
Mark

AOL

#6 Jan 27, 2008
Jay wrote:
Hear hear !
DT is dead as a doornail. Few really want to live there, or drive down there, hassle with parking (or hassle with a bus). The school system obviously does more harm than good. Gangs circle Circle Centre Mall demanding quarters.
The renaissance of the Old Northside chased out almost all the black people, but crime there is off the charts. It's so bad it's not even worth reporting every garage break in, IMPD can't do anything about it.
<quoted text>
Your wrong on people wanting to live d'town...why would they have built so many condo's if there wasn't a demand. There are museums, theater, shopping,parks (for the post above who says they need parks), multiple restaurants that aren't in Castleton or Greenwood as well as the ability to walk to most everything and never even have to get in your car for a week.
If it wasn't for the overall housing slump, the condos d'town would be selling well.
Babbage

Terre Haute, IN

#7 Jan 27, 2008
Jay, you have one of the most bleak views of DT and the city that I have seen. The city has changed for the better since the 1970s, in case you haven't noticed. Maybe you should visit from time to time. You are right about one thing though, there are a few homeless people around CC from time to time.
NAPTOWN DENVER

AOL

#8 Jan 27, 2008
Babbage wrote:
Jay, you have one of the most bleak views of DT and the city that I have seen. The city has changed for the better since the 1970s, in case you haven't noticed. Maybe you should visit from time to time. You are right about one thing though, there are a few homeless people around CC from time to time.
Exciting downtown Indpls??
PLEASE....it's still indianoplace kids.......fat people who smoke from Terre Haute no less???
uhh

Evansville, IN

#9 Jan 27, 2008
RickyBobby76 wrote:
The problem is money.
The developers want to charge Chicago prices. The only problem is companies don't pay Chicago salaries here, and Circle Center is no Michigan Ave.
If they want to make DT cool and hip, they need to make it cheap, at least initially.
Having a better school system would help too.
VERY well said.
Little Jayjay

United States

#10 Jan 27, 2008
Jay wrote:
Bark bark! I live under a rock somewhere and never visit downtown Indy, but think I know what's best for it.<quoted text>
jeez wrote:
This is freakin' ridiculous. How many millionaires are there running around Indy looking for downtown condos? Not too many, I'd guess. What downtown needs is nice, somewhat upscale but AFFORDABLE housing to attract professionals.
Jeez, you're ridiculous. You don't have to be a millionaire to own a condo downtown, even in a highrise, dummy. Even the ones conceptualized for the Market Square site weren't targeted at millionaires. If the damn thing ever gets off the ground, they'll cost the same as a big house in the suburbs. That's the whole point. Do you want to have nice remotely located digs and spend your life driving to and from work downtown, or do you want to have nice digs downtown and spend that drivetime on your life instead. Duh.

I'm all for affordable housing downtown too. But given the fact that there's an abundance of affordable housing in close proximity, there's nothing wrong with building market-rate, upscale, or dare I say it, for millionaires. Better to have them living in the city core than in the suburbs, especially in sprawl. Get better public transit going for all levels of society, or economic classes if you will, and it'll all work out just dandy.

Anyway... "Hurt says Puller's project failed the numbers test."

And the smell test, too. Canal water in the lobby? Phew! Stanky.

Speaking of canal boondoggles, I hope you've all heard of the State's scheme to sell the open space across the canal from the state library/history center to a developer for a HOTEL. That's been put on hold while Ballard settles in. But it's essential that folks in Indy, and all Hoosiers, make it clear to the city and state that we will NOT allow this crappy concept to go forward.
Highway Man

Indianapolis, IN

#11 Jan 27, 2008
People are afraid to go downtown, plus, once you are there, where are you going to park? Most individuals are either too lazy or in a hurry to drive around looking for a parking space. Heck, just go to Keystone at the Crossing, or soon the new Target at Glendale Town Center.

In the 21st.Century, we all want everything fast and cheap and at our fingertips, and if we have to think about it or worry about our safety or our comfort levels for very long, well, we will just drive on!
Clitoris

Muncie, IN

#12 Jan 27, 2008
^^Great post. These idiots have no idea what they're arguing about. The article explicitly states the reasons why these projects do and do not get off the ground.
SomeGuy

Indianapolis, IN

#13 Jan 27, 2008
Highway Man wrote:
People are afraid to go downtown, plus, once you are there, where are you going to park? Most individuals are either too lazy or in a hurry to drive around looking for a parking space. Heck, just go to Keystone at the Crossing, or soon the new Target at Glendale Town Center.
In the 21st.Century, we all want everything fast and cheap and at our fingertips, and if we have to think about it or worry about our safety or our comfort levels for very long, well, we will just drive on!
Maybe YOU are afraid to go downtown.

Funny, I have never found parking to be a problem. As a matter of fact, having lived in or having visited a great many of the large cities in this country, I'd have to say that parking in downtown Indianapolis is about as easy as it gets.

Frankly, downtown Indianapolis is one of the very few things that distinguishes this city from any other city. When moving here, it is the thing that impressed me the most about the city. Imagine, a downtown that doesn't shut down after 5:00pm. Not even downtown NYC can say that (which is different of course than midtown). There are plenty of things to do for those interested in more than just finding the closest Gap, Banana Republic, ect. clone franchise stores. My family and I always have a good time downtown and it is FAR better than living in the insulated world people place themselves into when they refuse to travel farther south than Castleton. Spend a day downtown and I feel alive again. Spend an hour in Castleton and my brain goes numb.
Joe

Los Angeles, CA

#14 Jan 27, 2008
You can always count on the Star and/or IBJ to report the dooms day scenario. It's no wonder a lot of these projects never get off the ground.
SomeGuy

Indianapolis, IN

#15 Jan 27, 2008
Joe wrote:
You can always count on the Star and/or IBJ to report the dooms day scenario. It's no wonder a lot of these projects never get off the ground.
Good post. My response when reading this article was 1) umm, duh, announced projects are not done deals and many fall through, and 2) why is the Star reporting this? What exactly is the point that they are trying to make? Why is this news?

Projects that get announced from private developers are almost never a certainty. This is true not just in Indianapolis but EVERYWHERE. In fact, one reason that a developer will announce a project is to get the publicity needed to generate the presales required for financing. Of course, there are other reasons for making a project public and the reasons depend a great deal on the type of project and other circumstances ... but in most cases, if the developer cannot generate enough presales, be it for condos, retail, or office space then they will not be able to get the financing needed for the project. People have to believe that the project has a chance and is more than just wishful thinking before they are willing to plunk down any money or make any commitments.

So why would the Star publish an article that casts doubt on not just one specific development but on the realistic chances of downtown development in general? I know they don't owe the developers anything and it is fair ... after all, it is all true. But what exactly is the point? Why do it at all except to say perhaps ... hey look, don't get your hopes up too high?
Patrick

United States

#16 Jan 27, 2008
Hmm. Let's see... We passed on a million square feet of active commerce because the building it would be conducted in would cast a shadow on the statehouse dome??? How forward thinking! That much business -not just conventions- is what supports hotels and downtown residences. People will live where they work-- I've said before, Indy won't fill downtown apartments and condos just because people want to walk to Colts or Pacers games. Nor will they live downtown so they can commute to office parks in Hamilton and Boone Counties.

That said, SomeGuy is quite right- we do have a nice downtown- much more vibrant, clean and safe than when I moved away 30 years ago. Now that I'm back I like to spend time down there, and I want to see our city and state leaders make the right decisions about making it even better. That may mean tall buildings- even if they shade the statehouse.
janice

Milwaukee, WI

#17 Jan 27, 2008
i would like to ask the reporter why he did not interview people i feel are very vital to the downtown community. examples would be some of the most prominent tenants like the people who own chase tower or the one america building. or i would suggest interviewing the people who are very important in getting downtown off the ground, which is the mayors office and also indianapolis downtown. every time i read the star, i think about how they just do not quite get to the heart of what a story could be. just bare-bones, negative, and sometimes even flat out incorrect reporting.

Since: Jan 08

Indianapolis, IN

#18 Jan 27, 2008
NAPTOWN DENVER wrote:
<quoted text>Exciting downtown Indpls??
PLEASE....it's still indianoplace kids.......fat people who smoke from Terre Haute no less???
And Denver is just bursting with excitement huh?
SomeGuy

Indianapolis, IN

#19 Jan 27, 2008
RickyBobby76 wrote:
The problem is money.
The developers want to charge Chicago prices. The only problem is companies don't pay Chicago salaries here, and Circle Center is no Michigan Ave.
If they want to make DT cool and hip, they need to make it cheap, at least initially.
Having a better school system would help too.
A couple of comments I have on this ... 1) you are talking specifically about condo development whereas this article is talking about development in general, and 2) the perception that you need millions to get into a condo downtown is simply incorrect. Yes, some of them have prices in the stratosphere (although nothing like what is coming into the market in Chicago ... see Trump, Spire, Waterview) but the primary targets are empty nesters (who may or may not have large incomes but have built wealth up through the years) and high income earners (executives or managers, attorneys, etc.) I make a low six-figure income and have a large house in Noblesville. I am not a millionaire by any stretch even if you include non-liquid assets. I can afford to get into a condo downtown.

If you look at my own situation, money is not the problem. I am married with two kids. Naturally, we socialize with families that we have the most in common with ... families similar to ours. Other kids that my kids can play with. I think downtown has a lot to offer but I will not move there. First, I want my kids to have the best educational environment that I can offer ... moving downtown helps this cause in no way, shape or form. Second, it would be like moving to an island with far fewer social opportunities and a lack of some of the amenities that the suburbs or even the surrounding city offers (grocery stores, for example).

You do have a good point ... in order to create a vibrant downtown, it has to appeal to and be affordable for a wider audience. The most successful cores have just that.
SomeGuy

Indianapolis, IN

#20 Jan 27, 2008
NAPTOWN DENVER wrote:
<quoted text>Exciting downtown Indpls??
PLEASE....it's still indianoplace kids.......fat people who smoke from Terre Haute no less???
Right ... what I see when I go downtown are nothing but fat smokers from Terre Haute ... please. I know this is a forum in which you can say pretty much anything you want but do you think negative and inaccurate generalizations actually add value to the conversation?

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