Council votes to support $30M Broad Ripple project

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The City-County Council on Monday evening approved issuing up to $7.75 million in bonds to assist in the development of a $30 million apartment-and-retail project in Broad Ripple.

Council members voted overwhelmingly in favor of the project, 22-7, after a lengthy debate about whether it needed a city subsidy.

Developer Browning Investments Inc. plans to use $5.7 million from the bond issue to help finance the project along the Central Canal. A $1.5 million bond to rebuild Tarkington Park on Illinois Street north of Meridian Street is tied to the development.

The city-issued bonds will be paid off over time from property-tax proceeds in the North Midtown tax-increment financing district. The district, created in January 2013, includes the Browning project, called Canal Pointe.

The developer received approval in October to rezone 1.9 acres northeast of College Avenue and the Central Canal to allow for a single 35,000-square-foot retail space—earmarked for a Whole Foods store, plus 119 apartments and a four-story parking garage.

"We have said all along that we would need TIF money to move this project forward," said Jamie Browning, vice president of development for company, in a prepared statement. "This is the news we've been hoping for to truly open the door to convert what has been a debilitated site there in Broad Ripple for nearly a decade, into something of real value to the community."

Browning Investments expects the project will generate more than $7 million in property taxes that will be used to pay down the bonds. It plans to use the $5.7 million for infrastructure improvements such as installing lighting and landscaping, demolition of existing buildings, and construction of a parking garage for the development.

Last month, the council’s Metropolitan and Economic Development Committee vote to support the bond issuance by a 5-1 margin. Democrat Councilor Zach Adamson cast the lone dissenting vote.

Also on Monday, the City-County Council voted to award a total of $5.5 million in tax-increment bonds tied to two downtown projects under construction.

TWG Development LLC is building 500 units and retail space as part of its $11.25 million Pulliam Place, a redevelopment of The Indianapolis Star headquarters property at 307 N. Pennsylvania St.

And Insight Development Corp., the development arm of the Indianapolis Housing Agency, is partnering with Flaherty & Collins Properties to build the $23 million Millikan on Mass project consisting of 144 affordable and market-rate apartments and retail/restaurant space.

The bonds will be used for improvements to North Talbott Street, the existing Star headquarters, the parking garage at North Delaware and East Vermont streets, and property adjacent to the existing Barton Tower site, as well as the construction of a dog park and public plaza, and streetscape and landscape improvements.



  • University Park
    I believe the "public park" they are referring to is University Park, directly to the west of the Pulliam project. A "dog park" in University Park - another genius idea from City DMD.
  • correction in article
    Also, a correction in the article. Talbott Street in Indianapolis is spelled with two "t's". This is the alley that runs north/south through the Pulliam project.
  • more clarification
    Can someone give more clarification on the Millikan/Pulliam project? Is this money to help finish the Millikan building along Mass Ave? Where is the "public square" and dog park doing? Are these parts of the Pulliam or Millikan projects?
  • ha ha
    Just more ammo for the opponents to a commuter tax. Indy can find money to hand out to private business interests but can't find money to handle basic services...
  • Just because you build it
    Lee, just because you build those doesn't mean they will be used. You have to change people's habits. There is already free access to those type of places. Let's get to the point where those parks, trails, and green spaces are over used then look to build more. Until then, if they aren't utilizing them now, then they probably won't utilize the new ones.
  • more parks, green space, and trails
    So with the lack of parks in central Indiana, we keep doing this. We are one of the unhealthiest cities in the country and would rather build apartment buildings and parking than having parks, trails, recreational facilities sorely needed for the many couch potatoes and video gaming potatoes.
  • Why?
    Does it make sense to subsidize a private developer building a project for yuppies and hipsters when the near north and near east sides of Indy are becoming war zones?Why not reserve the bond issue for a developer willing to take some risk and spend $30 million on a project on 38th Street or East Washington?
  • Great to see.
    About time we have some finality to the debate--looking forward to what this will do to further enhance living in Broad Ripple!

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  1. You are correct that Obamacare requires health insurance policies to include richer benefits and protects patients who get sick. That's what I was getting at when I wrote above, "That’s because Obamacare required insurers to take all customers, regardless of their health status, and also established a floor on how skimpy the benefits paid for by health plans could be." I think it's vital to know exactly how much the essential health benefits are costing over previous policies. Unless we know the cost of the law, we can't do a cost-benefit analysis. Taxes were raised in order to offset a 31% rise in health insurance premiums, an increase that paid for richer benefits. Are those richer benefits worth that much or not? That's the question we need to answer. This study at least gets us started on doing so.

  2. *5 employees per floor. Either way its ridiculous.

  3. Jim, thanks for always ready my stuff and providing thoughtful comments. I am sure that someone more familiar with research design and methods could take issue with Kowalski's study. I thought it was of considerable value, however, because so far we have been crediting Obamacare for all the gains in coverage and all price increases, neither of which is entirely fair. This is at least a rigorous attempt to sort things out. Maybe a quixotic attempt, but it's one of the first ones I've seen try to do it in a sophisticated way.

  4. In addition to rewriting history, the paper (or at least your summary of it) ignores that Obamacare policies now must provide "essential health benefits". Maybe Mr Wall has always been insured in a group plan but even group plans had holes you could drive a truck through, like the Colts defensive line last night. Individual plans were even worse. So, when you come up with a study that factors that in, let me know, otherwise the numbers are garbage.

  5. You guys are absolutely right: Cummins should build a massive 80-story high rise, and give each employee 5 floors. Or, I suppose they could always rent out the top floors if they wanted, since downtown office space is bursting at the seams (http://www.ibj.com/article?articleId=49481).