Artistry: Future headquarters for The Indianapolis Star?

February 28, 2013
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Artistry IndianapolisMilhaus Development is building its $30 million Artistry project with a surprisingly large first-floor commercial space. It's rare for a developer to build that big a space without a tenant on the hook. Though Milhaus has not announced its plans for the 68,000-square-foot space, it would seem to be a good fit for The Indianapolis Star. It sits within a few blocks of the newspaper's current campus, is roughly the right size (if a little small), and would offer high-profile, first-floor access and convenient parking. Gannett, the Star's owner, announced last year that it wants to sell the series of buildings at New York and Pennsylvania streets the newspaper has occupied since 1907. Gannett, which is represented by CBRE, has been looking for about 80,000 square feet with a first-floor presence in downtown. There aren't many office spaces that fit the bill: One of them is the Artistry at 451 E. Market St., the mixed-use replacement for the former Bank One Operations Center. Other possibilities the Star may be considering include 500 N. Meridian St. (Safeco Building) and Regions Tower, both of which have large blocks of space available and could accommodate a first-floor profile. Star Media Publisher Karen Crotchfelt said in an email that the company still hopes to move by the end of 2013: "We are in negotiations with multiple possible locations right now and have not made any final decisions," she wrote. Milhaus principal David Leazenby would not say whether the Star has looked at the Artistry space. "It's been shown to numerous potential tenants," Leazenby wrote in an email. "Until we have signed leases, we don't discuss specifics."

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  • Ugh...
    ... have to say I'd be rather disappointed if all that potential retail space was lost to a single office tenant. And what a way to "bore down" a project with so much potential for sparking additional (and much anticipated) development of that area.... I hope this doesn't end up being the case.
  • Please no....
    I agree with Marshall that this space/building has a lot of potential and should not be used for 1 tenant, especially the Star with all due respect to them. The Star has plenty of other options that would be more fitting and probably closer to its current location.
  • Groan
    I moved to Indy from a larger, more significant metro area, and all this stuff cracks me up. Amateur hour. What a horrible waste of space. P.S. Every new project downtown looks exactly the same. It's like the Brady Bunch Movie.
    • Yawn!
      Sounds like Laff is living a rather retrograde life, or is not the master of his (her?) own domain. Usually, you want to move to a MORE "significant" area, not to a LESSER one! I konw, I know, your job or spouse was the reason for the move, right? Dude, who wears the pants in your life?!
    • No thanks
      How about a Trader Joe's or something worthwhile to the community instead of a Gannett-owned propaganda rag?
      • Oxymoron?
        Can you really say "Artistry" and "Indianapolis Star" in the same sentence?
      • Groan
        So maybe you should go back to your "larger, more significant metro area"
      • Security issues?
        Aside from the unappealing prospect of yet another office tenant in retail space, I find it hard to believe the region's largest newspaper would WANT such a visible operation. Considering they're currently in an impenetrable fortress. You know, terrorist fears and all... And GM, if you think Gannett is a propaganda rag, why on earth aren't you equally suspicious of Trader Joe's? After all, they're pretty crunchy-granola and generally have a left-leaning mission and workplace culture.
      • Unecessary
        Seems like the current crop of Star editors could pull wire copy from home. And Tully surely doesn't need a fancy street-level office to his thrice-weekly "Here's my obvious take on something that has been rehashed in the media 15,000 times already" columns.
      • Trader Joe's YES!!
        I think it would take a committee like the Super Bowl committee to get another Trader Joe's south of the north side or even another store here in Indianapolis. However, how wonderful it would be as an anchor in that space downtown!!!
      • story?
        I am a fan of this column, but I don't think I understand the reasoning behind this posting. If I am reading it right, no one has said the Star is looking at the Artistry, or even suggested the idea, other than the author.
      • Oh yeah?
        well I've lived here since the 1980s and you... are right. Damn.
      • to groan
        (L-A-F-F person) (even our comment reply threadding in bush league ;-) )
      • Stop
        Steve, we need to stop greeting every criticism of Indiana with "well, just leave." Our rapidly aging, overweight, undereducated population desperately needs a new influx of ideas. Until we're really honest about our shortfalls, we can't fix them. This building, not a great start...
        • Location / Volume
          I agree with a majority of the posters that this would be a shame to loose all of that retail space to one tenant, when we are trying to redevelop that area and the East Market Street corridor. There are many otehr places where they could have a first floor prescence, but still locate a lot of their staff on upper floors and be more cohesive than the hodgepodge of buildings they have now. HOWEVER, the amount of staff and foot traffic that would be brought to that area with a large employer like the Star, could help spur further development in and around this place. So it's a toss up, but I'm leaning more towards a diverse retail portfolio with this space instead of one. Although, my bet - is that they would be long-term tenants, which would be good stability for the future success of retail in this area.
        • STOP!
          'Me'- please don't transfer your own inadequacies and self-hate onto the rest of us. I like downtown Indianapolis and its people. It's a great place to live. Now- back to finding a great retail tenant worthy of this space...
        • Time for you to move back to where you came from...
          What in the world are you talking about...You have no clue ....You should stick to your Brady Bunch movies...This property is a great fit for The Star...Let me guess, no job?
        • Leave
          Then leave...
        • Trader Joes Secret
          Don't get me wrong, I like Trader Joe's and would welcome more of them in the area, but it cracks me up when people get all warm and fuzzy over them. They are owned by the multi-billion dollar grocery chain Aldi (much bigger overseas than here in the US). They aren't as "hippie" as you think.
        • Trader Joe
          Sassafras- Traders Joe is innovative and offers great product at competitive prices. Their stores are clean; their employees are friendly, hardworking and appreciate the customers who make their paychecks possible. In other words, I see nothing left-leaning about them at all.
        • Star Location
          I agree this is not the best first floor location for the Star. This should be utilized as retail space not office space. There will need to be convenient retail to support the housing. The other locations are better suited for the Star. It will be nice when the Star moves out of their building. This is one of the ugliest, uninviting buildings downtown. It's such a great location. Hopefully the exterior will be totally redone for its reuse.
        • Target?
          Hmmm. I see a lot of red inside the first floor area of the rendering. A Super Target there that includes a grocery would blow that cramped, overpriced O'Malia's/Marsh on New Jersey street out of the water. And be a game changer for our underserved downtown.
          • If a Target goes in, lets hope it does not contain a food component. Every grocery/retail Target does poorly with both. Less selection of food and retail items. You put a 65,000 sq ft office space in that location, it creates more density for the MSA project along with others. More demand for housing, retail, mass transit, entertainment etc.... I am not sure a large retailer wants to be that far on the edge of downtown. The new MSA project needs to have stores similar to Target, Best Buy and Kittles.
          • There is Criticism and Then There Is Just B****ing
            To Me: You are correct that a community should always be open to constructive criticism. But, an individual who goes on about how they came from a more "significant area" and who just pooh-poohs the poor yokels in Indianapolis is not offering constructive criticism, they are just trying to boost their own low self-esteem. And yes, people like THAT can and should go back to wherever they came from.
          • downtown resident
            As a downtown resident, I am happy that Marsh provided the full service grocery we needed at a price point that is acceptable and did not treat it as just a gourmet shop. They should be thanked for staying. I would love a TJ but with two in easy access, don't think our demographics would support one downtown.
          • Couple Things
            First, the news that Baldwin & Lyons is possibly vacating downtown, means 81,000 square feet could be opening up on Meridian street across the street from WTHR. Seems like a perfect fit to me. Second, I am a resident of downtown, and unlike Ana, I do not consider two Trader Joe's on the northside to be "easy" access. While I am not that big of a fan of TJ's, I think one opened downtown would succeed fairly well, and a Super Target with a full grocery store would fill a giant gap in necessities. The goal is for downtown residents to be able to get everything they need without traveling. I will be happy once that happens.
          • I think I speak for us all
            When I say that we wish you would go back to your "significant Metro area" groan." Maybe you just couldn't cut it in the bigger market?

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          1. With Pence running the ship good luck with a new government building on the site. He does everything on the cheap except unnecessary roads line a new beltway( like we need that). Things like state of the art office buildings and light rail will never be seen as an asset to these types. They don't get that these are the things that help a city prosper.

          2. Does the $100,000,000,000 include salaries for members of Congress?

          3. "But that doesn't change how the piece plays to most of the people who will see it." If it stands out so little during the day as you seem to suggest maybe most of the people who actually see it will be those present when it is dark enough to experience its full effects.

          4. That's the mentality of most retail marketers. In this case Leo was asked to build the brand. HHG then had a bad sales quarter and rather than stay the course, now want to go back to the schlock that Zimmerman provides (at a considerable cut in price.) And while HHG salesmen are, by far, the pushiest salesmen I have ever experienced, I believe they are NOT paid on commission. But that doesn't mean they aren't trained to be aggressive.

          5. The reason HHG's sales team hits you from the moment you walk through the door is the same reason car salesmen do the same thing: Commission. HHG's folks are paid by commission they and need to hit sales targets or get cut, while BB does not. The sales figures are aggressive, so turnover rate is high. Electronics are the largest commission earners along with non-needed warranties, service plans etc, known in the industry as 'cheese'. The wholesale base price is listed on the cryptic price tag in the string of numbers near the bar code. Know how to decipher it and you get things at cost, with little to no commission to the sales persons. Whether or not this is fair, is more of a moral question than a financial one.

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