Ace eyes Fall Creek Place

September 18, 2008
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Ace Hardware siteKing Park Area Development Corp. is in advanced talks with Ace Hardware to anchor a new retail project at the northeast corner of 22nd and Delaware streets. Whether the roughly $2-million project gets off the ground depends on if King Park lands a $521,000 job creation grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, said Janine Betsey, the group's executive director. She declined to reveal many details about the project, which she described as preliminary. Locally based A2SO4 is designing the building, but no rendering was available.
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  • I would hate to see this be the nail in Fusek's coffin.
  • Competition is good. Is Fusek's struggling? If so, better one Ace here and no Fusek's downtown, then no Ace here and no Fusek's downtown.
  • I didn't know Fusek's was in the coffin. I would imagine these stores could co-exist.
  • They're many blocks and residential districts away from each other. I highly doubt all the condos, Lockerbie, and Chatham Arch would drive up to the Ace unless their prices are better than Fusek's, in which case, they deserve to go under. There are plenty of us (namely me) who could walk to the proposed Ace. It's a good thing.
  • I would tend to agree that this should not kill Fuseks. This is two miles north. I would doubt many people in the 2000 to 3000 blocks drive to Fuseks. I would tend to believe Fuseks draws mostly from the downtown and near downtown areas. Fuseks opening did not kill Sudding Hardware at Shelby and Raymond which is 20 blocks south. Heck, the opening of Home Depot and Menards at Southport did not hurt Suddings either. Suddings doubled in size shortly after the opening of the big boxes. My point is 2 miles is a pretty far distance between hardware stores. It think Fuseks will live or die on their own, not because an Ace opens 2 miles north.
  • Finally, good to see this corner get a solid infill proposal! I am very pleased with the redevelopment of the 22nd Street corridor between Meridian and Alabama!
  • Finally, good to see this corner get a solid infill proposal! I have been very pleased with teh redevelopment of the 22nd Street corridor from Meridian to Alabama.
  • As long as it's not bright yellow with EIFS and black-and-white checkered trim, it's fine with me. :-)
  • ...oh, yeah: no tacked-on stone base or fake black windows, either.
  • Probably a strip mall development. Is this a single tenant proposal? The word anchor suggests otherwise.

    Fall Creek Place was a great project. But the serious incompleteness in it is that it was 100% residential, and the purely single family district they created was not a neighborhood in a real sense since it was monolithic. I always look to see if there is a pedestrian anywhere when I drive through FCP, and almost never see one.

    The live-work buildings at 25th and Delaware were a huge shot in the arm, particularly with the Goose. And they look nice too. A retail district along 22nd St. would be great - if done right.

    If they turn this into a typical inner city Indy strip mall, it will be an opportunity missed. Clearly, there will be a parking lot. But how parking is integrated into the site design (preferrably in the rear or above/below grade), as well as the overall design of the buildings: their architecture, massing, materials, how they relate to the street and the surroundings, how they express the character of Indianapolis, the tenant mix - these are the that will determine if the project is a success or not. A hardware store, as a neighborhood convenience item, is a good start. If this ends up looking like the Walgreens at 16th and Meridian, that would be sad. It doesn't have to be expensive. I believe a good design doesn't have to cost much if anything more than a bad one. It just takes a desire to do something of quality.

    By the way, since this is a CDC backed project with public grant money involved (i.e., tax dollars), then clearly the public deserves a say on this project.
  • Fall Creek Place was a great project. But the serious incompleteness in it is that it was 100% residential, and the purely single family district they created was not a neighborhood in a real sense since it was monolithic. I always look to see if there is a pedestrian anywhere when I drive through FCP, and almost never see one.

    The live-work buildings at 25th and Delaware were a huge shot in the arm, particularly with the Goose. And they look nice too. A retail district along 22nd St. would be great - if done right.

    If they turn this into a typical inner city Indy strip mall, it will be an opportunity missed. Clearly, there will be a parking lot. But how parking is integrated into the site design (preferrably in the rear or above/below grade), as well as the overall design of the buildings: their architecture, massing, materials, how they relate to the street and the surroundings, how they express the character of Indianapolis, the tenant mix - these are the that will determine if the project is a success or not. A hardware store, as a neighborhood convenience item, is a good start. If this ends up looking like the Walgreens at 16th and Meridian, that would be sad. It doesn't have to be expensive. I believe a good design doesn't have to cost much if anything more than a bad one. It just takes a desire to do something of quality.

    By the way, since this is a CDC backed project with public grant money involved (i.e., tax dollars), then clearly the public deserves a say on this project.
  • There are small hardware stores all around! Another, at least until the market is saturated, will only increase exposure and sales for all!

    But you know going in to these small hardware stores that you're going to pay a little more for the convenience of not having to drive 20 minutes ... to save $2.

    And I love that Fusek's is next to the grocery. And that they are the only place open on Sundays, save for the big boxes. I wouldn't go to buy a water heater, but when you need supplies to finish that job at the last second...it's nice.
  • My wife and I are FCPers, and we have found that most of our neighbors are split between Fusek's and Sullivan's (49th & Penn) for their hardware needs. I'm not sure this location would completely cut onto Fusek's demographic (at least not enough to drive them out of business). I also second Nick's comments above...hooray for potentially another walkable destination in FCP! I have heard through the grapevine that a neighborhood fitness center may be in the works as well...
  • Wow! such nice, welcoming comments to invite new development into the area. I am going to print and save these comments to repost once we see the post showing the architects' renderings. I am sure the claws will come out once you get a look at the facade, and out of fear of where to place the restrooms, might I suggest a men's and women's port-o-let outside surrounded by a faux stone wall.
  • I didn't read any of the above comments as being negative........
  • Ever been to Jungle Jim's grocery in southwest Ohio? Their bathroom has a fake port-o-let facade.
  • Another fine example of why Carmel is just plain awesome and my hood (downtown Indy) is lacking leadership. If this were a commercial corner in Carmel, IN it would at a minimum require two stories and would also encourage mixed use.

    Terrible!
  • It won best restroom in the nation award last year.
  • i would prefer a liquor store or dollar store, but i guess hardware will have to do
  • Ivo - please reread the article and note where it says anchor a new retail project. even more specifically note the word anchor. that word tells me ace is just a single component of a larger proposed project. i'm not sure how you came to your conclusion from the very limited information stated in the article above.
  • tyler - there are already 2 dollar stores and a liquor store 2 blocks from that location, over on Central Ave.... We don't need more of those... A harware store would ROCK!

    Kudos to ACE... I hope it happens... I'll be hoofin' it there for supplies, that's for sure!
  • Since we have no details about the development, how about we talk about the federal government taking $521,000 of our tax dollars and giving them to a developer to build retail stores. This is why we pay federal taxes, to create $8 per hour jobs? Wouldn't it be nice if Indy could use this half-mill to replace a like amount of property tax abatements, where presumably we're creating and preserving jobs that pay middle and upper-class wages/salaries?

    It seems to me that the end result is either A) a shift of low-paying retail jobs from one part of the City to another or B) a needless half-million dollar subsidy to a developer for a project that the market was already demanding.

    Hopefully, somebody can explain the need and justification for the grant, other than to say that nothing's developed there yet.
  • King Park is a community development corporation, one of those public private partnerships that rebuilt Center Township over the past 30 years. Their job is to bridge the gap between what the community wants and what the market delivers. On 22nd Street, the market delivers Church's Fried Chicken, a liquor store, and a couple of dollar stores.

    We (by that I mean the collective polity of the city) have decided that it's better to have Fall Creek Place than Dodge City between 22nd St. and Fall Creek from Meridian over to College. Ten years ago, the market mechanism had ground to a halt...or rather, it bred an endless cycle of tax sale, slum rentals, and ultimately, decay and demolition.

    Fixing decades of disinvestment and reweaving the urban fabric requires either patient capital or outright grants. That's usually because the actual and perceived costs of doing business in an urban redevelopment area are higher than in, say, Fishers. In short, incentive grants are necessary to draw out private investment. To that end, Fall Creek Place is part of numerous special zone designations, including Enterprise Zone. It's a focus of government investment...again, a policy decision.

    Finally, not everyone in Fall Creek Place lives in a two-degree, two-income household. The folks who don't might appreciate having entry-level or post-retirement jobs that don't require a graduate degree.
  • In response to Ivo's Carmel love-fest:

    Fall Creek Place does tend to need to work harder to land retail development for a number of reasons. Largely though, FCP still doesn't look good on paper. When any non-local corporation looks at either the zip code or census tract information for Fall Creek Place, neither are too inviting as of yet.

    Even data from two years ago can't compete with the urban utopia that is Carmel. Do they still pave the streets with candy up there?
  • Already an Ace at 38th and Illinois - To much duplication across the country- That is why Wall Street is crashing.
  • Carmel deserves a love-fest. They're actually getting development right up there. They have leadership, actual leadership. It's almost not even debatable that we completely lack that here.
  • I heard that 25 years ago there used to be a hardware store at this intersection. Can anyone else verify that?
  • I am confident that the IHPC will weigh in on this, even though it's across the steet from Heron-Morton Place. The project better have parking in the rear, and at leats a two-story structure built to the sidewalks. This is outside of RC, so no review there...we kinda need to hope the developers see it this way.
  • What about a round about at this location? Watch for the absurd resonses to this.
  • My family moved to Broadway Street in 1959 and I've lived in the home I'm in since 1985(built in 1890same block), my family and I paid for these homes out of pocket due to the red-lining in this area at the time.Most of the houses were worn out, in disrepair, needing ceilings, walls, new wiring and plumbing..but we stayed, and we tried to improve our lot. Ah, improvement has its merits, but, now I am about to lose my home because my(and others) property taxes have been reassessed at huge rates(my taxes have tripled). I don't care what they build, it won't pay my taxes and will make increase worse . Most new residents in this area were/are not required to pay taxes for 5-6 years as incentive to move here. Those of us whose tax unit was changed from 101 to 154 are paying for the new sewers(bond) and lack of tax revenue from others.We were not given a tax abatement, why should anyone else get one? I'm sure readers will be angry at what I have written, but this is totally unfair! I don't relish the thought of being homeless, but at least I'll have company under Fall Creek bridge. Fall Creek Place/ Rip Off Place.
  • Yeah, traffic on Delaware needs to move even faster.
  • First, I don't understand why we need to send money to Washington to have them send it back to help build a hardware store. Second, I would think the Dept of Labor (if the country needs such an agency and it needs to spend money on developing jobs) would have bigger priorities than building a hardware store. Maybe like retaining jobs from going overseas, attracting them back from other countries, or helping develop industries (not necessarily old-school industrial jobs) that might otherwise develop in other countries.

    I understand that there are real and perceived costs that are higher there than at some other locations, but it would get built eventually if the market would justify it. It doesn't seem like good policy to me.
  • Idyllic, Good policy has already been determined in Washington: the Feds give money away in targeted neighborhoods. We live in a mixed economy, not a market economy, and it makes sense at the local level to go after such grants if they are available.

    I think a labor grant that helps a neighborhood-scale business get started generating activity, jobs, rent, property taxes, sales taxes and wage taxes on an empty site is a good thing for Indianapolis.
  • In response to 'overtaxed' above, I agree mostly with what he/she is saying. If the city was giving a tax abatement to get new demographic groups to move in, it should have also relieved those who were staying. One disagreement I have with them, however, is that statement that bringing in a new retail development will not help their property tax bill. Actually, it will. One reason Carmel is so successful is that their property taxes for homeowners are LOWER than most of Marion County. I've sold many houses in both counties, and taxes are more affordable up there. One major reason? Huge corporate tax base to offset homeowners' taxes. Of course there are other factors that Marion County deals with that Hamilton County doesn't (more public assistance for lower income folks, more parks to keep up, much larger infrastructure, etc.), but if Marion County is to compete for new development, more businesses are needed. In the end, more commercial development in your neighborhood = more tax income to offset homeowner's taxes + more jobs for neighborhood residents = more money back in your neighborhood = more demand for local housing = more tax revenue to keep your bill lower...etc. It really would be a great thing to see this new retail development come in and succeed. Now let's get a real grocery store (redevelopment of Kroger on 16th St anyone?) in this area!
  • Amen, Rob. Especially if the nonprofit developer uses a federal subsidy to make it happen.
  • Ok. Yes, it would probably be stubborn and silly for the City or its nonprofit CDCs to not take such money from the feds, and abolition of the D.O.L. is probably a topic for a different. I agree with Rob's points about tax base, although I would argue that the money would be better used for creation of white-collar or skilled labor jobs that could locate anywhere, and for which there is not a finite demand.

    There's only so many dollars that Marion County and Central Indiana residents have to spend. I still believe the market will meet that demand for retail space, with or without subsidies. I highly doubt that the money people would spend at this development would otherwise be spent outside Marion County, thus I believe the net gain in property and sales tax revenues, as well as number of jobs would be negligible. Of course, my objection would be much more relevant to M.C. taxpayers, if and when a property tax abatement were to be requested.
  • Idyllic, I think the standard argument is that because there is so much perceived cost built into the market price of doing business in Center Township, the market is distorted.

    Subsidy is a long-established and reasonably straightforward method of levelling the playing field when the stated goal is bringing necessary services and jobs to underserved neighborhoods.

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