Updated Gibson Building unveiled

September 12, 2007
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Gibson BuildingMayor Bart Peterson and OneAmerica executives cut the ribbon on the renovated Gibson Building this morning. Work on the 1916 building (originally a car manufacturing facility) began in April 2006 and cost more than $10 million. The building is southeast of Capitol Avenue and Michigan Street, just north of OneAmerica Tower. About 180 AUL employees work on the second and third floors. The company still is working to lease about 22,000 square feet of retail space on the first floor. Peterson said he expects the new building to be a catalyst for redevelopment, much like the AUL Tower was in 1982. "This was a building worth saving, and because it's been saved this is a better city," Peterson said. What do you think?
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  • Driving past yesterday, I noticed that the plywood inside the main doors on Michigan had finally been removed and that all construction equipment and materials inside was gone. Great rehab -- obviously the building looks gorgeous now, but the work they did on the sidewalks and plantings along Michigan and Capitol is an excellent touch. They just need to get their butts in gear and get us another downtown grocery store in there!
  • In looking at this place, it looks great. I was thinking that we need to bring in a mid-west grocery store into this place (if we are going to bring any grocery store here). Marsh, Meijer (grocery part), [fill in name here] would be a few ideas. These ideas might be wrong but to bring in home Grown places would be at least important to me (when shopping).
  • I drive by this building 3 times a week on my way to IUPUI. Been watching the renovation and couldn't be happier with the way it turned out. I really hope this and the new project on the Canal a block away will really help to spur some development along Capital and Senate north of Vermont. That stretch on both streets really has so much potential.

    CorrND, great idea on the grocery store considering all the appartments along there.
  • I think a store would get used by a lot of the people along the canal, including the college students, as well as those living in the Rink-Savoy, the Athletic Clubs and other smaller spots around. It would be interesting though to see what they put in there.
  • This reminds me A LOT of that building just north of I-65 downtown! I believe there was an article on it a month or so ago...

    Anyway, this looks really nice! And they didn't have to use any tax abatements either... Great job guys!
  • Looks great! I just want to know what the heck took so long??? That's a renovation of a small building that has been going on forever with the sidewalk canopies for construction, etc.

    Still, great addition to the downtown. Grocery store? Interesting.... AUL / OneAmerica is a class act and will do what's right for them, policy holders, and the community.
  • I should note that getting a grocery store wasn't my idea -- it was in the original announcement when they started the rehab. They're also interested in getting a bank branch in the ground floor.

    The well-established residential area in the NW quadrant of downtown -- Ransom Place, canal apartment complexes, etc -- really needs a walking-distance grocery store of its own.
  • Sorry to disappoint, but I believe they got an abatement for the renovation.
  • brock -- I think the sidewalk canopies were put up 3-4 years ago just to protect people from falling chunks of the building. The actual renovation took just a little over a year (though people have been working in the upper floors of the building for months already).
  • i just walked up to the gibson building this past weekend and looked in the windows. what a great renovation job! the exterior looks like it was just build yesterday. and the sidewalks/planters are a class act. i wish we could incorporate the streetscape improvements into every renovation/new construction like they did. i vote for an indy location of bloomingfoods from bloomington. that would be a cool spot for this type of grocery. just a thought...
  • I'm glad to see we all pretty much agree on something for once ha ha. I love to see them renovating old buildings downtown rather the demoing them. I only wish they had had that frame of mind 30-40 years ago. They took out some pretty spectacular buildings then (though I'll admit I don't know what kind of state they were in at the time).
  • Well ya know, we shall consider ourselves pretty damn lucky! i mean as many buildings as it seems we have lost, we still saved a fair share compared to sister cities our size. Which is a VERY good thing!
  • totally agree, ianeck! the big three losses: marion co. courthouse, english theater, and the knights of pythias. probably the lincoln hotel and claypool (althought that was damaged heavily by fire). there was a really cool industrial building unfortunately knocked down last year on the near east side. kind of by the fire station there on east washington. it had a solid stone art deco flower mural (huge, circular) carved into it with yellow bricks. what a cool conversion that would have been for a gallery or something. sooo many little niche areas like that are lost each year and we don't even know about it. i just happened to drive by a couple years ago and though what a cool building it was. the next time, it was rubble...boo.
  • While we are on the subject of saving wonderful old buildings, I'd like to point out to everyone that we may lose another great building, unless something is done. IPS #97 on East 10th Street is a really amazing art modern building that is dangerously close to being demolished in favor of a parking lot for Arsenal Tech High School. Here are some informative links:

    http://www.nesconews.org/school97.html

    http://historiclandmarks.org/news/2007_10Most/10most07-4.html

    Please check these out and make sure we keep another great building around in Indianapolis.

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  1. With Pence running the ship good luck with a new government building on the site. He does everything on the cheap except unnecessary roads line a new beltway( like we need that). Things like state of the art office buildings and light rail will never be seen as an asset to these types. They don't get that these are the things that help a city prosper.

  2. Does the $100,000,000,000 include salaries for members of Congress?

  3. "But that doesn't change how the piece plays to most of the people who will see it." If it stands out so little during the day as you seem to suggest maybe most of the people who actually see it will be those present when it is dark enough to experience its full effects.

  4. That's the mentality of most retail marketers. In this case Leo was asked to build the brand. HHG then had a bad sales quarter and rather than stay the course, now want to go back to the schlock that Zimmerman provides (at a considerable cut in price.) And while HHG salesmen are, by far, the pushiest salesmen I have ever experienced, I believe they are NOT paid on commission. But that doesn't mean they aren't trained to be aggressive.

  5. The reason HHG's sales team hits you from the moment you walk through the door is the same reason car salesmen do the same thing: Commission. HHG's folks are paid by commission they and need to hit sales targets or get cut, while BB does not. The sales figures are aggressive, so turnover rate is high. Electronics are the largest commission earners along with non-needed warranties, service plans etc, known in the industry as 'cheese'. The wholesale base price is listed on the cryptic price tag in the string of numbers near the bar code. Know how to decipher it and you get things at cost, with little to no commission to the sales persons. Whether or not this is fair, is more of a moral question than a financial one.

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