Carmel's Main Street getting more upscale apartments

May 2, 2014
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Carmel officials have signed off on Keystone Realty Group’s plans to build a five-story mixed-use building southwest of Old Meridian and Main streets.
As IBJ reported in February, the Indianapolis developer is proposing 14,000 square feet of ground-floor retail and 204 upscale apartments atop a parking garage, making the most of the narrow 5.3-acre site.

Sophia Pointe rendering, April 2014Keystone Realty Group's five-story building will include ground-floor retail along Old Meridian Street. (provided rendering)

The land also slopes down as it nears Old Meridian, forcing designers to come up with a building that is 89 feet tall in places. Keystone had to ask the city to approve the height and other exceptions to established development rules.

Members of the Carmel Plan Commission unanimously approved Keystone’s development plan at their April meeting, and the Board of Zoning Appeals this week cleared a handful of related requests.

“It’s a challenging site,” said City Councilor Kevin “Woody” Rider, also a member of the Plan Commission and chairman of its special studies committee. “We have to concede on height because of the shape of this lot. If we didn’t, we’d have a building in Carmel that would make a great ski slope.”

Keystone made a number of changes to the proposal during the approval process, Rider and others said, including increasing the amount of brick used on the building façade.

The developer also agreed to provide a connection from the property to The District, an $80 million mixed-use project planned south and west of the Keystone site.

Carmel’s Old Meridian District is drawing developers’ attention as West Main Street is poised to become the main route between its Arts & Design District and U.S. 31, which is undergoing a massive overhaul now. No interchanges are planned between Main Street and 116th Street once that project is complete.

Improvements to Main Street also are in the works.

Krieg DeVault attorney Paul G. Reis told the Plan Commission that Keystone is finalizing a cost-sharing agreement with the city to pay for road construction and streetscaping near its site.

The city said last week it has secured $4.2 million in state funding to help expand Main Street on either side of U.S. 31; the required local match is at least 10 percent.

Plans call for expanding roundabouts at Old Meridian and Illinois Street to accommodate two lanes of traffic, as well as installing new utility lines, curbs, gutters, storm sewers and sidewalks. Construction could begin this fall and conclude next spring.

Initially dubbed Sophia Pointe, Keystone’s Old Meridian project likely will get a new name to avoid confusion with the developer’s similar Sophia Square mixed-use building in downtown Carmel. 


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  1. The east side does have potential...and I have always thought Washington Scare should become an outlet mall. Anyone remember how popular Eastgate was? Well, Indy has no outlet malls, we have to go to Edinburgh for the deep discounts and I don't understand why. Jim is right. We need a few good eastsiders interested in actually making some noise and trying to change the commerce, culture and stereotypes of the East side. Irvington is very progressive and making great strides, why can't the far east side ride on their coat tails to make some changes?

  2. has an article from 2010 where they talk about how Interactions moved to Massachusetts in the year prior. The article includes a link back to that Inside Indiana Business press release I linked to earlier, snarkily noting, "Guess this 2006 plan to create 200-plus new jobs in Indiana didn't exactly work out."

  3. I live on the east side and I have read all your comments. a local paper just did an article on Washington square mall with just as many comments and concerns. I am not sure if they are still around, but there was an east side coalition with good intentions to do good things on the east side. And there is a facebook post that called my eastside indy with many old members of the eastside who voice concerns about the east side of the city. We need to come together and not just complain and moan, but come up with actual concrete solutions, because what Dal said is very very true- the eastside could be a goldmine in the right hands. But if anyone is going damn, and change things, it is us eastside residents

  4. Please go back re-read your economics text book and the fine print on the February 2014 CBO report. A minimum wage increase has never resulted in a net job loss...

  5. The GOP at the Statehouse is more interested in PR to keep their majority, than using it to get anything good actually done. The State continues its downward spiral.