Whole Foods and a retractable roof

October 27, 2007
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VenuPremier Properties, the developer of Venu at 86th Street and Keystone Avenue, has acquired a 13-acre property across the street where another developer had planned to build a Whole Foods and condos. Premier is hoping to bring the natural foods store to the mixed-use Venu instead and build just residential on the other site. New plans filed with the city this month show a pedestrian bridge crossing 86th Street and also offer other new details, including plans for retractable roof and wall sections that could make Venu an all-weather destination. All the details are here.
  • How many Whole Foods and Trader Joe's are there going to be on flippin' northside before ANY OTHER PART OF TOWN GETS A DECENT HEALTH FOOD STORE??!!!
  • This project just keeps sounding better. Indy may not be a leader in traditional urban development, but with projects such as this, a lot of the suburban areas are seeing very ambitious, non-traditional development.

    The 86th/Keystone area is the closest thing to a true edge city type environment Indianapolis has. Putting in place developments like Venu, upgrading the Fashion Mall, etc. are critical to keeping Marion County competitive. This is what I'm talking about when I say a differentiation strategy, not a commodity strategy, is what Marion County needs to pursue.

    Someday maybe many of the strip centers in the area could be redeveloped into Venu like projects.
  • This Venu is lookin good. REAL good!
  • Its official, I'm in love. Connecting the two properties with a pedestrian bridge is a fantastic idea. Premier is really impressing me, and Venu is looking great. I wonder if they're hiring, because that is exactly the sort of developer I'd like to work for.
  • Where is the mass transit? All this density with an already busy Keystone Ave. running down the middle. Indy keeps adding denser 'new urbanist' communities without an efficient means of getting there.
  • What part of the development would have/need retractable roof/walls? The retail?
  • Michael, with respect to mass transit. I don't think building a mass transit system to get there would be the place to start. However, a two-way transit system between Venu and Keystone I think it is an ABSOLUTE necessity. A pedestrian bridge won't cut it, and 86th street and Keystone can only handle so much. I can guarantee most people would leave Keystone, hop in their cars, and drive to Venu. A fast and simple system a la airport tram would be cool. This would be an excellent opportunity to show how even a small mass transit system can be effective.

    This kind of system would be fast, could easily be kept clean, and would be in the best interest of both developments. It wouldn't be that expensive to build (relatively speaking), and it would probably be fairly easy to get the developers involved in financing the project.

    So far as future forms of mass transit from other parts of the city, that would be a completely different animal. The exponentially larger size of the project aside, you would have to fund it using public dollars. How do you convince someone whose property taxes just doubled that you want to build a system like this, using their tax dollars, when they're not even going to use it? I think any discussion of mass transit in Indy will ultimately return to that question.
  • I must be behind on this news, but I wasn't aware the Kite development with Whole Foods had fallen through. Were they not able to put the land together? Cory, what is the current status on Whole Foods in general -- are they out of the letter of intent with Kite on the NW side of that intersection at 86th and Keystone?
  • Braingirl: The Kite development didn't fall through; Premier just bought it. They now own the land and the Whole Foods lease and are hoping to convince WF to go in across the street instead.
  • This IS amazing!
  • With respect to ianeck's comments about mass transit between Venu and the Fashon Mall - I would argue that the developers of both likely WOULDN'T be interested in connecting the two developments via a tram any other former of transport. Though they will, to some degree, welcome the added pull that two developments this close could bring to the region --- quite a destination --- the last thing they want is for it to be easier for folks to leave their development and go to the other. Though much further apart, it would be like Disney World offically running buses to Universal Studios in Orlando - and vice versa.

    I know of a situation in another midwestern town where two developers have upscale retail developments diagonally across from each other - just like 86th/Keystone. One side of the street has stores like Crate & Barrel, Apple and Cheesecake Factory - and the other side of the street has Nordstrom, Saks, Maggiano's, etc... When the newer of the two was being built, they talked about coordinating some sort of transportation between the two, to cut down on the hassle of parking, etc.... As potential tenants were snatched by one - or as existing tenants were snatched by the other, the thought of cooperation quickly ceased. This is business, after all, and each wants more customers than the other. Helping out your competition isn't a wise plan - but, we'll see.
  • Awesome, this project gets bigger and better all the time. i can't wait for construction to start. however, i'm starting to wonder if the buildings might be taller than they have originally proposed. one indiana square has something like 700,000 square feet of office space with a 25,000 sq. foot 'footprint' this could end up being 28 floors. i know i'm probably dreaming but i would love to see the city's skyline expanded with tall towers.
  • This area still sounds great. I do agree that there needs to be some thought to road in that area. That seems to always be the least talked about and important thing. The area is already bumper to bumper in rush hour (at least on 86th) and on the weekends. It's going to just get ridiculous when they double the amount of retail in that tiny little area. I honestly don't know what the solution is but some thought needs to be paid to that.
  • It is starting to remind me of the Falls Church and Tysons Corner area of Washington DC. Tall towers just inside outside of the beltway. High end retailers and easy access to the intersatate. With this and the height that is being built at the mixed use development with tall 10 story towers at 96th and Keystone, this will be a neat section. Cory, any more news on that development at Allisonville and 96th. Last time I was at Common Tribe, nothing had been going on.
  • Hold on people. Doesn't something sound too good to be true? You know what that means!

    Someone's going to have to pay for this. And Something tells me the developers are going to make a LOT of money. So, who's left?

    Regardless, I'll enjoy it from my downtown residence, between April and August when it's not a nightmare to drive along 86th, errr, 82nd Street, err whatever it is.
  • jj:

    - what industry are you in? Obviously, it's not real estate, econ, business in general.

    - Do you have any idea how much $$ will be added to our tax base??!! PERSONALLY I APPROVE OF LOWER TAX BURDENS ON WASH TOWNSHIP RESIDENTS.

    - If you don't like innovative capitalists who provide value to our economy (and heaven forbid profit from it) move to another country!

    - When Venu is built out it's residents will make fewer auto trips b/c of all the walkable amenities. So your 3year old mind can understand that equals less traffic despite increased population growth (which will happen with or without Venu).

    - Any questions numbskull??
  • jj is a troll, plain & simple!
  • I agree...I too am offically IN LOVE! Come on, let's get those cranes up!!

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