Eroding home equity & BW3

August 6, 2008
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Indianapolis home equityIndianapolis has won the dubious distinction of third place on a Forbes magazine list of the nation's "Most In-Debt Households". The magazine uses numbers from Moody's Economy.com to establish which of the nation's top 200 cities have lost the most wealth to declining home equity. The average home equity in the Indianapolis area is about $24,470 or 26 percent in 2008, down since 2004, when the average was $42,320 or 42 percent. Full article.

Update: BW3 controversy
BW3 franchise owner Pete Watson met with city planning officials last week to discuss the restaurant's unapproved facade and promised to have his architect submit proposed changes, even as workers continued with the installation of signs and awnings. Senior Planner Jeff York said the city has sent an inspection team and will consider a stop-work order if the developers don't cooperate. He said the existing facade will not be approved. Watson said he was under the impression the city had approved the new look, which he said is part of the chain’s new standard “trade dress.� There could be a major hurdle for any changes: The restrooms sit against the front facade, meaning any major revamp could require interior changes as well. The Circles and Squares blog has more. Original post here.
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  • The main thing we need to hope for now is that the city doesn't roll over and let them do some half-assed makeup job to adjust their design to something marginally acceptable.
  • WHO, in there right mind, puts Restrooms along the Front windows in a Downtown building. Who is this Phoenix school of Design Scholar?

    P.S. Love the picture on Circle and Squares, That Whole 1920's building on top of a DQ store rip-off look. I’m sending this picture straight to Historic Preservation Magazine.

    AS. “When designs go wrong” or “WHAT THE HELL WERE THEY THINKING”

    RESTROOMS!! Really? Hate to be this “Architect”.
  • I must admit that the facade is just horrible and they should throw the proverbial book at them for trying to rush this open. The idea of putting toilets at the front by the doors is idiotic and the city should lean on them as much as possible to change their design.
  • Hey! they were just trying to accommodate the panhandlers by putting the bathrooms up front. I think it was a brilliant idea. It also make for a good drug drop. I hope they put in lay in ceilings.
  • trade dress...can't someone kill this kind of crap before it ruin everything. Clearly that store front would be appropriate for Anywhere Stripmall, Anywhere, America, but right smack on Washington St. I mean this is the National Road. To put that crappy facade in they tore out huge storefront type windows that would have actually been appropriate. BW's should look to the Penn Station franchise just down the block for some pointers. Although, the architect for that building is a well regarded historic preservation and urban infill architect. Makes all the difference in the world doesn't it.
  • Yeah, Bob - I'm wondering if it's really an architect too. It hurts me to think a fellow professional would mess up so badly. Not that I'm perfect, I've screwed up plenty and taken the hit for it - but bathrooms at the street facade in a historic urban structure? That's 1st year stuff, the kind of design that gets aspiring students asked not to return to second year studio.
  • Pete's cheap. :)
  • Please indulge me in copying my post from Cory's previous posting about BW3:

    Why is the City indicating that they will issue a stop work order, IF NECESSARY? Isn’t it standard procedure to issue a stop work order when work is being done without obtaining permits and approvals? Why were they allowed to keep installing the stone pieces on the facade yesterday? It seems the more work they get done, the more likely they’ll get approval to keep it the way they want.
  • idyllic indy, its because the city has no balls. plain and simple.
    work must be stopped immediately. what a joke this city is to let this crap continue.
  • Wow. Circle and Squares has I believe the architect or the person that could be in charge of the facade. I say we all start emailing the company and say thanks for putting a huge ugle yellow building in our promising historic and mix of modern downtown! I probably will.
  • Not a single post about the Forbes report. Posters are more concerned with a
    building facade than this more serious problem. . . .third most in-debt
    city. . . .now that's something to complain about.
  • regarding the Forbes document - it all depends on how you define debt. I see equity as the opposite of debt. Maybe we're the third best city at financial leverage? Either way, it doesn't keep me up at nights. The downtown fiasco is more fun anyways.
  • The word on the street is that the owner has finally brought in an architect to clean up this mess. I wonder if the architect will use this as an opportunity to show off the before and after photos on his website.

    Who wants to bet that in the very near future, the owner's backyard landscaping will see the introduction of some very expensive engineered stone edging and accents.
  • So, If he is finally bringing in an architect, how did he get his design release from the state in the first place? Did he use an engineer for the design?
  • I almost missed what everyone was talking about, as my attention was diverted to the new Clown Building across the street.

    C'mon, how come noone is talking about this horrific, polka-dotted abortion that is across the street? I kept waiting for a Volkswagen to pull up, and have 50 clowns pour out, while honking bicycle horns.

    I am not an architect, but I know ugly. That said, I welcome Dunkin Donuts back to Indy. You have been gone way too long.

    I didn't think that the Buffalo place looked that bad. I guess the good news is that we are finally filling in store fronts that have been closed for years. I agree that downtown needs to maintain a level of standard, but by reading the comments here, there obviously is an element in our city that would prefer to sip their whine, and eat their cheese, and do all that they can to prevent new businesses from coming, all the while showing their contempt for the peasants that must share the same streets as them.

    Get off your high horses.

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