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One Mass Ave project starts; another one is in limbo

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The development arm of the Indianapolis Housing Agency has closed on financing and started construction of an $11.5 million, 61-unit apartment project at Massachusetts Avenue and East and North streets.

It's the first of two phases of housing and retail space known as Millikan on Mass that Insight Development plans to build on ground surrounding the Barton Tower Apartments. But the fate of the second phase is up in the air because its financing had been tied to a project that the team of Insight and Flaherty & Collins Properties had hoped to develop across Mass Ave at the site of the Indianapolis Fire Department headquarters.

The city announced Oct. 24 that it had selected the team of J.C. Hart Co., Strongbox Commercial and Schmidt Associates architects to build a $43 million, mixed use project with 235 apartments on the fire department site.

Insight President Bruce Baird said his development team is beginning the process of evaluating its options for phase two of the development. That project, with 68 apartments and 9,000 square feet of retail space, would line Massachusetts Avenue and East Michigan Street across the street from the Athenaeum.

Baird said it's possible the project, which already has received city design approval, will proceed even though the project across the street was awarded to the Hart/Strongbox team. He said Insight/Flaherty is only now beginning to focus on phase two after closing phase one financing last week and beginning construction Nov. 12.

Phase one, which includes 5,000 square feet of street-front retail, is financed almost entirely from the sale of rental housing tax credits awarded to Insight by the state last March. The credits are being syndicated by locally based City Real Estate Advisors and are being purchased by Huntington Bank and Fifth Third Bank. The construction lender is Merchants Bank of Indiana, with participation by First Merchants Bank.

The use of rental housing tax credits places limits on the income levels of those who occupy the units. More than half of the 61 units will be leased to people with household incomes between $23,000 and $40,000 a year. The balance will have even tighter income restrictions.

Baird said the five-story brick structure, most of which will front East Street, is scheduled to be ready for tenants in December 2013. Though work has started, a formal groundbreaking is expected to happen early next month. The design, by a partnership of the architecture firms Ratio and A2S04, preserves surface parking used by residents of the 21-story, 246-unit Barton Tower, a 1967 building where the Indianapolis Housing Agency recently completed $8 million in improvements, including new mechanical systems and cosmetic upgrades.

Baird said the Barton, which is open to seniors and the disabled, lost tenants during the renovation but is now back up to about 88 percent occupancy.

 

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  1. Now if he'd just stay there...

  2. Daniel - what about the many US citizens who do NOT follow what the Bible teaches? The Hindus, Jews, Muslims and others who are all American citizens entitled to all rights as Americans?? This issue has NOTHING to do with "What the Bible says..." Keep all Churches separate from State! Pence's ongoing idiocy continues to make Indiana look like a backwards, homophobic state in the eyes of our nation. Can't we move on to bigger issues - like educating our kids?

  3. 1. IBJ should link to the referenced report. We are in the age of electronic media...not sharing information is lazy. Here is a link http://www.in.gov/gov/files/Blue_Ribbon_Panel_Report_July_9_2014.pdf 2. The article should provide more clarity about the make-up of this panel. The commenters are making this item out to be partisan, it does not appear the panel is partisan. Here is a list of the panel which appears to be balanced with different SME to add different perspectives http://www.in.gov/activecalendar/EventList.aspx?view=EventDetails&eventidn=138116?formation_id=189603 3. It suggests a by-pass, I do not see where this report suggests another "loop". 4. Henry, based on your kneejerk reaction, we would be better off if you moved to another state unless your post was meant as sarcasm in which case I say Well Done. 5. The article and report actually indicates need to improve rail and port infrastructure in direct contradiction to Shayla commentary. Specifically, recommendation is to consider passenger rail projects... 6. People have a voice with their elected officials. These are suggestions and do not represent "crony capitalism", etc. The report needs to be analyzed and the legislature can decide on priorities and spending. Don't like it, then vote in a new legislature but quit artificially creating issues where there are none! People need to sift through the politics and provide constructive criticism to the process rather than making uninformed comments in a public forum based on misinformation. IBJ should work harder to correct the record in these forums when blatant errors or misrepresentations are made.

  4. Joe ... Marriage is defined in the Bible ... it is mentioned in the Bible often. Marriage is not mentioned once in the US or Indiana Constitution ...

  5. Daniel - Educate me please: what does the Bible have to do with laws? If the government wasn't in the business of marriage to begin with, then it wouldn't have to "define" marriage at all. Marriage could be left as a personal, religious, or otherwise unregulated action, with no ties to taxes, legal status, etc. Then people could marry whomever they want, and all this silliness would go away. Remember to vote Libertarian in November.

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