IRT plans $3M renovation

April 7, 2008
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IRT RenderingThe Indiana Repertory Theatre has won a $3-million grant from the Lilly Endowment to fund renovations of the Indiana Theatre building at 140 W. Washington St. IRT plans to transform vacant restaurant space at street level into a new public lobby (click for larger rendering and baloon bouquet) and add offices in the basement. A second phase calls for updates to office and rehearsal space. Locally based Rowland Design is designing the project.
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  • The IRT is a wonderful venue and an asset to patrons of the arts of theCity of Indianapolis. A renovation will serve both the neighborhood and the venue well.
  • That's great news. I'd also love for them get a replica of the giant vertical INDIANA sign that used to hang above the awning.

    The Cultural Trail is going to pass right in front of the IRT, so any improvements they make are definitely going to be seen.
  • When is David Letterman going to do a week of his show from IRT?
  • Don't forget fiscal ordinance/MDC Resolution 07-R-065, approved on 2/25, which awarded $460,000 to Dawson Incorporated for the complete roof replacement, addition of roof drains, repair of masonry and renovation of two suites.

    The City has spent an additional $200,000 or so over the last couple of years to keep the building intact while searching for a 'sugardaddy' like Lilly to put up the big bucks for a comprehensive renovation.

    Well done, DMD. Now let's hope you are not further downsized in the coming months...
  • I like the Letterman idea. I wonder if the IBJ can get that suggestion to some movers and shakers.
  • If L'explorateur is looking for high-end restaurant space within walking distance of the Convention Center complex, why make this vacant restaurant space into a new public lobby?

    Just wondering.
  • There have been several restaurants in that space - the Beanery, Calloways, and something else - and they have all failed. I'm not sure why, exactly, but it may have to do with the space having a strange layout, with most of the space being underground and connected to the tunnel between the statehouse and circle centre. Maybe they're kind of hemmed in by the IRT...or maybe there is just a curse on the space...
  • I agree completely with Peter, I just don't think it would work for Neal/Lex. Besides, who wants the City for a Landlord? What's happening to the Liquor License?

    Best Wishes to IRT!
  • I like the Letterman idea, but I am not sure the Indiana theater would be big enough, but the circle theater would
  • When is David Letterman going to do a week of his show from IRT?

    The best time would be during Final Four week in 2010. It would allow co-promotion of the events. Someone tell CBS.
  • I think the problem with that space is locaton...it's across from the gian set back acress the street at National City and it is a the west end of Dodge if you wiil. So there isn't a lot of foot traffice unless you are a stong enough pull to be a destination.

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  1. So much for Eric Holder's conversation about race. If white people have got something to say, they get sued over it. Bottom line: white people have un-freer speech than others as a consequence of the misnamed "Civil rights laws."

  2. I agree, having seen three shows, that I was less than wowed. Disappointing!!

  3. Start drilling, start fracking, and start using our own energy. Other states have enriched their citizens and nearly elminated unemployment by using these resources that are on private land. If you are against the 'low prices' of discount stores, the best way to allow shoppers more choice is to empower them with better earnings. NOT through manipulated gov mandated min wage hikes, but better jobs and higher competitive pay. This would be direct result of using our own energy resources, yet Obama knows that Americans who arent dependent of gov welfare are much less likely to vote Dem, so he looks for ways to ensure America's decline and keep its citizens dependent of gov.

  4. Say It Loud, I'm Black and Ashamed: It's too bad that with certain "black" entertainment events, it seems violence and thuggery follows and the collateral damage that it leaves behinds continues to be a strain on the city in terms of people getting hurt, killed or becoming victims of crimes and/or stretching city resources. I remember shopping in the Meadows area years ago until violence and crime ended make most of the business pack you and leave as did with Lafayette Square and Washington Square. Over the past 10 to 12 years, I remember going to the Indiana Black Expo Soul Picnic in Washington Park. Violence, gang fights and homicides ended that. My great grandmother still bears the scares on her leg from when she was trampled by a group of thugs running from gun fire from a rival gang. With hundreds of police offices downtown still multiple shootings, people getting shot downtown during Black Expo. A number of people getting shots or murdered at black clubs around the city like Club Six on the west side, The Industry downtown, Jamal Tinsley's shot out in front of the Conrad, multiple fights and shootings at the skating rinks, shootings at Circle Center Mall and shooting and robberies and car jackings at Lafayette Mall. Shootings and gang violence and the State Fair. I can go on and on and on. Now Broad Ripple. (Shaking head side to side) Say It Loud, I'm Black and I'm Ashamed.

  5. Ballard Administration. Too funny. This is the least fiscally responsive administration I have ever seen. One thing this article failed to mention, is that the Hoosier State line delivers rail cars to the Amtrak Beech Grove maintenance facility for refurbishment. That's an economic development issue. And the jobs there are high-paying. That alone is worth the City's investment.

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