Developer seeks second phase for canal apartments

July 15, 2014
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The developer of a large-scale apartment building under construction along the Central Canal downtown is seeking city approval to start a second phase.

Investment Property Advisors of Valparaiso is finishing up the first phase: 10-story, 319-unit building between West St. Clair and Ninth streets that also features about 8,000 square feet of retail space.
Canal student
                              housing rendering 225px
The Metropolitan Development Commission Regional Center Hearing Examiner on July 10 recommended granting Investment Property Advisors’ approval to start the second phase. The MDC is set to consider the request Aug. 6.

Plans call for a smaller, six-story structure with 197 units and nearly 6,000 square feet of retail space, as well as a 175-space, two-level parking garage. The first phase included a three-level, 278-space garage.

All told, the two projects represent about a $100 million investment. (Both phases can be seen in the image above.)

“We always felt that the market was deeper than what we were providing [with the first phase],” said Chase Sorrick, a principal of Investment Property Advisors. “The opportunity on the parcel just south of us became available, so it was a natural for us to build another building.”

To construct the second phase, Investment Property Advisors would demolish a single-story industrial building at 350 W. St. Clair St., just south of its building under construction.

The 18,000-square-foot industrial building sits on two acres and is the former home of baking products distributor B.H. Gardner Co. Inc.

Investment Property Advisors is building its first phase on 1.2 acres where a 52,000-square-foot warehouse occupied by locally based Kirkbride Bible Co. once stood.

The developer originally proposed building a 26-story tower on the land but encountered resistance from neighbors over its height and impact on traffic in the area.

Ratio Architects is the designer of the project.
 

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  • Phase 2 - Redo
    Phase 2 should seek to differentiate itself visually from Phase 1. The current 9 on Canal building is one of the ugliest buildings on the canal. The monolithic south facing brick wall with the hilariously undersized windows is a blight on the city and should not be mimicked in the second phase. We all know they're building what amounts to an off campus dormitory, but it could still be better than this uninspiring brick heap.
  • Such a Shame
    Such a shame that the tower was blocked. There needs to be more density and building upward along the canal. The residential structures along there are underwhelming to say the least and need to provide more of a retail component so there is more of a lively atmosphere along it.
  • I have to admit I have not see the building yet, but your comment "The monolithic south facing brick wall with the hilariously undersized windows is a blight on the city" Led me to wonder if maybe that was a temp facade waiting for phase 2. This part of the story leads me to believe I am correct. "The opportunity on the parcel just south of us became available, so it was a natural for us to build another building.” Can anyone confirm that the south facade will be replaced by the new building? It is not unusual to build a cheaper facade in anticipation of the next phase.
  • Berlin wall of brick..
    Not to mention the conventional dormitory structure of this building, the lack of retail space ON the canal level continues to invite more runners and walkers and less vibrancy to an already dead canal. As these are the last potential parcels of hope in sprucing up the canal, they've once again failed miserably.
  • Awful
    The first phase is uglier in reality than it was in the renderings (hard to believe, I know). This looks like a dorm that was built in the 50s or 60s. A college now wouldn't think about building something this ugly. Take a look... http://i.imgur.com/nAS6Oq9.jpg
  • Adam Thies
    I thought Adam Thies was supposed to improve the design in this city. When you can't even get quality design on a prime spot on the canal, you have failed. I sadly laugh everytime I see this headline, "DMD's Thies pushing for better design..." http://www.ibj.com/dmds-thies-pushing-for-better-design-more-projects/PARAMS/article/44846
  • Ugly
    The 9 Canal building is beyond ugly.
  • U-G-L-Y
    Why do I get the urge to grab my pom poms and start the following cheer every time I see a rendering on this blog: "U-G-L-Y and you ain't got no alibi, you're ugly....what what...you're ugly"
  • Ugly Indeed
    Looks like a facade meant for the "projects". If they had built the 10 story structure it would be Indy's new Cambrina Green. Who approved this pathetic design?
  • Tough Crowd!
    Wow, tough crowd to please! I think the second phase makes the building look complete and does just what it should and hides the monolithic south facade with the hilariously undersized windows. I have to disagree however that this building is "ugly". It is a design that I think will last the test of time and not be dated. Unlike most projects around town at the time, this building actually has brick! Agree, more retail could happen on the canal, but market will determine what's viable, and without the other retail on the canal, I would guess that new retail would be difficult to achieve.
  • Wrong
    Stand the test of time? It doesn't even stand the test of now! It is a replica of Cabrini Green...http://colorlines.com/assets_c/2010/12/cabrini_green_120710-thumb-640xauto-1730.jpg
  • NO MAS!
    I was initially surprised to hear that Ratio is the architect of this sad piece of work. But as a practicing architect, I am all too familiar with instances in which the architect serves essentially as 'of record', and has little to do with a building's actual design. But like Colin Powell's unintentional complicity in the lie that was the Iraq war, the face of the presentation has to be held accountable. So shame on Ratio for lowering its standards to grab a fee and not educating its out-of-market client toward something more palatable to this market. And shame on whomever at the local oversight level for allowing this abomination to see the light of day. When will it ever end?!! Aarrgghh!!!
  • Tiny windows
    The windows are comical, small double hung vinyl windows you can buy at a big box for 98.00. LOL on the traffic a taller structure would create. What is this "Cornfield County", oh I forgot MDC thinks so.
  • Re: Ritter
    Ritter, the Cabrini Green comparison is sadly spot-on. Sad, so sad. If it's not good enough for the projects of Chicago, it shouldn't be good enough for our downtown canal!!!
  • re: Ritter
    Really?!? This development is nothing like Cabrini green, not even close. Just because a building is rectangular, more than 2 stories and has brick doesn't make it a replica of Cabrini Green. On a side note, Cabrini Green always reminds me of the movie "Candyman" :)
  • Too Bad
    Canal has grown and matured as Indy's most underutilized resource. It's had the opportunities, but when designers and planners are stuck with out of touch developers, this is what you get.
  • Chicago
    Wow, this really does looks like the projects. Maybe Indianapolis is starting a new architectural trend here, "retro government housing-chic." I think 'Cabrini on the Canal' has a nice ring to it. We have the crime of Chicago, soon to be getting the pizza of Chicago (Giodarnos), might as well add in the project of Chicago.
  • Lunatical comparisons
    These comments are getting ridiculous. I get that the building isn't a shiny glass and steel marvel, but that could have as much to do with it being student housing as anything else. What's more, it is located in a formerly industrial part of town, surrounded by brick structures. It fits in with the area. I too would like it to engage the canal better, but that doesn't make this government housing. And by the way, Cabrini Green's architecture wasn't the source of its problems. Let's offer legitimate criticisms instead of silly nonsense about government housing.
  • Cabrini on the Canal
    Lol, Cabrini on the Canal....that literally made me spit my coffee out. Thanks for the laugh.
  • The comments have gotten to be nothing more than a few wanna be architects who obviously get no large commissions of their own and so they want to tell others what to do with their clients projects and money. The topper is the person who feels this looks like Cabrinin Green? Really? I hope you are not an architect and if so, you should get your license pulled. Sour grapes yield a bitter whine.
  • Circle Centre update?
    What happened to all those restaurants that were supposed to go in Circle Centre that was first reported seven or so months ago as being "close" to being done? I'm talking about Yard House, Bobby Flay and Bonefish.
  • Not a great look
    Walked by the building this morning while running on the canal. Definitely has a very institutional look and feel to it. And I don't know what it is about the design or materials, but compared to other buildings around it on the canal, this one just comes across as sterile and cheap.
  • 9 0n canal development.
    Sorry guys but i think with the second edtion with the glass on the right end and stylish design really gives this development a much nicer and cool urban chic look,Im sure their will be some leed type lighting as well and mabe those restaurant type arnings,shades whatever you call them sticking from the windows like the ones at the 9 irish on mass AV.Develop.phase 1 black or maroon would go nice,Now as far as the cabrini green stuff i have to disagree with those statements ,as those were straight up box type built and multiple units and no fancy glass type stuff as well either.
    • PJ is write
      PJ is totally right, Ratio's "BRICK MASTERPIECE" should not be compared to Cabrini Green: it's much WORSE. It's great that Indy is stuck in the past about (hmmm...let me do my math: 2014-1960=54) 50+ years. Anyone claiming this building is better than our classic 1950-60s public housing examples is in severe denial. This is a joke, correct? Let's face the fact the Indy canal continues to thrive with outdated, lifeless structures keeps Indy (thanks to her Ratio, DMD & Thies) stuck beyond the past. I mean it's sad some deem this acceptable because of it's brick (a true Indy standard) make-up. Embarrassing to even spend my time wasting any energy with this. It's 2014, correct? I'm very curious to hear what Ratio and Thies have to say about this project they helped build? Let's hear--once again--how it's all about the developer...and if that's the case, what's the point for this town's red tape approval system? What does Thies really do? Why is Ratio stuck with the same 'design' no matter where it's built? Another reason to stay away from this side of town.
      • Over the top comments and then view photo
        Couldn't believe the comments comparing phase one to Cabrini–Green Homes! Then click on the photo supplied by Ritter and shocked at how bad it looks on the canal. Hopefully phase two will be more visually appealing.
      • Not Great...Not Awful
        I agree that the 10 story section of this building lacks design but I think Phase 2 will at least help this look better. Phase 1 is built so unless we get the developer to tear it down (not going to happen), we need to try to get a better design in Phase 2. I remember back when this developer wanted to build a 26 story tower and there were people screaming mad when the city reduced the height. I think we can all agree we would not want 26 stories of this look! I know they showed a different design but I still think it would have ended up using several of these same elements. If you look at this developer's portfolio, they hadn't really built anything over 5 stories before this so that was my concern when they proposed the tower to begin with. They didn't have any experience building a high rise project. Also we need to remember this is student housing, they aren't going to build it the same way as a high-end apartment or condo project. I'm not thrilled with this project but let's make the best of it that we can and be glad we didn't get 26 stories of this.
      • Student housing
        STOP with the "this is student housing so its ok that it looks like crap" comments. Take a look at the student housing that is being built around the country. None of it looks this bad.
      • 9 on the canal.
        I still think guys and if you look harder you'll agree that phase 2 looks a whole lot better,I even like the and just noticed the white 2 toned brick and stoned part at the very top and than again look at all the glass addition added,even kind of reminds me of the new city way ymca being built.ps tony j.
      • Stuck with it
        I'm a homeowner in the neighborhood of this apartment building. I'm really disappointed, too, with the almost-finished product known as 9 On Canal. Our neighborhood association didn't oppose this project but naively hoped it would be more design-forward. Now I wonder if only a fabulous mural by the French artist JR would save the boring facade that faces east.
      • Chill Out
        I agree the windows on the new building should have been better, but the new building is hardly a housing project. Also, the new second phase will complete the development and improve how it looks. In addition, people who keep rambling on about Cabrini Green would do well to learn a little history. When built, the original town houses (which still exist) were widely praised for theyr design and quality of construction, even the older expansion highrises were nicely built (the last phase built in the 1960's did cut corners)--it was no Pruitt-Igoe, rather it was a high quality development that became a lousy place to live after suffering years of neglect when it was not properly maintained or policed. So, the problem with Cabrini Green was not the architecture, but Chicago's poor maintenance and policing of units and lack of investment by the city in economic opportunities for the residents.

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