Housing pitched for old St. Vincent

January 20, 2009
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Old St. Vincent HospitalIvy Tech Community College is working with private developers on a plan to turn the old St. Vincent Hospital into a housing complex for Ivy Tech and IUPUI students. The deal, if finalized, could save the vacant 1913 building from a wrecking ball. The plans call for a 100-unit apartment complex, ranging from one-bedroom to four-bedroom units, for a total of 250 beds, developed by two companies also involved with the Paramount student housing complex. The developers, Paramount Realty Group and Alboher Development Co. Inc., would get the building on Fall Creek Parkway and a 100-year land lease on the property in exchange for pouring more than $18 million into renovations. Ivy Tech, meanwhile, would consider other land for expansion of its adjacent downtown campus. The full story, reported in last weekend's print edition, is here. Can they pull it off?
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  • I don't know if they can pull it off, but thank heaven they came to their senses and are tying to put this nice old building to good use.
  • I think they can pull it off, because the building is unique in terms of Indianapolis' historical character. Also, the historical aspect of it will even make the area more admirable for students and tourists, especially the downtown area. I went to this Ivy Tech campus for a short while and I remember driving by the old building daily, it always dissapointed me knowing that the building wasn't being used for anything. I knew that the building was going to be used for apartments sooner or later, it just made so much sense.
  • I agree with Dustin, they should be able to pull it off. Isn't the building already divided into apartments? So there shouldn't have to be too much they would need to do to it structurally. I'm sure they'll have to replace all of the wiring and copper pipes though!
  • Best of luck to them & President Obama! :)
  • Very good idea. It is the best use for that property. The views of downtown from the south side of the building are spectacular.
  • This is an excellent use for the structure.
    If this was downtown I would have more objection.
    If it were downtown it would make a great civic hall or government structure. For it's location this is a perfect function (under the circumstances.) for the beautiful and historic hospital.
    Historic preservation of this structure should have been in mind much earlier. The idea of demolition should have never even been brought to the table.
    It will be a source of local pride and beauty for years to come if preserved.
  • Great idea for re-use of building. However, how does Paramount Realty think they can assemble $18 million dollars when they cannot pay their contractors over $200,000 to complete payout of Gateway Crossing in McCordsville.
  • Is Paramount out of their league on this one? They've been named in a few contractor tiffs, and they're simply not that big. I wonder what they bring to the table for Alboher...
  • Awesome buildling. I hope the succeed.
  • I believe the community as a whole wants the building to be reused in some great way.......But the developers proposing and promising great things fall way short on experience and financial capability......
  • If one of the most respected multi-family experts in the State says it is a tough project to justify. Sorry folks, I see a repeat of MSA. Particularly if the widely held of this developer is accurate.

    Moreover, it would seem that losing this building will kill Ivy Tech's expansion plans.

    In hindsight, perhaps what created the biggest challenge for this building was transforming it into subsidised housing a few years ago.
  • It won't hurt Ivy Tech to build 3-4 story buildings with integrated parking, or to build an actual urban campus instead of a suburban one.

    The biggest obstacle to their expansion is the shrinking state budget.

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  1. to mention the rest of Molly's experience- she served as Communications Director for the Indianapolis Department of Public Works and also did communications for the state. She's incredibly qualified for this role and has a real love for Indianapolis and Indiana. Best of luck to her!

  2. Shall we not demand the same scrutiny for law schools, med schools, heaven forbid, business schools, etc.? How many law school grads are servers? How many business start ups fail and how many business grads get low paying jobs because there are so few high paying positions available? Why does our legislature continue to demean public schools and give taxpayer dollars to charters and private schools, ($171 million last year), rather than investing in our community schools? We are on a course of disaster regarding our public school attitudes unless we change our thinking in a short time.

  3. I agree with the other reader's comment about the chunky tomato soup. I found myself wanting a breadstick to dip into it. It tasted more like a marinara sauce; I couldn't eat it as a soup. In general, I liked the place... but doubt that I'll frequent it once the novelty wears off.

  4. The Indiana toll road used to have some of the cleanest bathrooms you could find on the road. After the lease they went downhill quickly. While not the grossest you'll see, they hover a bit below average. Am not sure if this is indicative of the entire deal or merely a portion of it. But the goals of anyone taking over the lease will always be at odds. The fewer repairs they make, the more money they earn since they have a virtual monopoly on travel from Cleveland to Chicago. So they only comply to satisfy the rules. It's hard to hand public works over to private enterprise. The incentives are misaligned. In true competition, you'd have multiple roads, each build by different companies motivated to make theirs more attractive. Working to attract customers is very different than working to maximize profit on people who have no choice but to choose your road. Of course, we all know two roads would be even more ridiculous.

  5. The State is in a perfect position. The consortium overpaid for leasing the toll road. Good for the State. The money they paid is being used across the State to upgrade roads and bridges and employ people at at time most of the country is scrambling to fund basic repairs. Good for the State. Indiana taxpayers are no longer subsidizing the toll roads to the tune of millions a year as we had for the last 20 years because the legislature did not have the guts to raise tolls. Good for the State. If the consortium fails, they either find another operator, acceptable to the State, to buy them out or the road gets turned back over to the State and we keep the Billions. Good for the State. Pat Bauer is no longer the Majority or Minority Leader of the House. Good for the State. Anyway you look at this, the State received billions of dollars for an assett the taxpayers were subsidizing, the State does not have to pay to maintain the road for 70 years. I am having trouble seeing the downside.

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