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Indiana Landmarks adds two Indy sites to endangered list

April 28, 2016

Two sites in Indianapolis have been added to Indiana Landmarks' annual top 10  list of most endangered buildings.

The not-for-profit group released its list Thursday, with eight new listings and two landmarks that also appeared on last year’s list.

The Ford Motor Co. Assembly Branch and the Southside Turnverein Hall, both in Indianapolis, are newcomers to the list, joining the Rivoli Theatre.

Other sites on this year's list include the Washington County courthouse, Beech Church near Carthage, Hazelwood in Muncie, the Speakman House in Rising Sun, Monon High Bridge near Delphi and Pryor's Country Place near Angola.

Camp Chesterfield in Chesterfield was the other repeat from last year’s list.

Here’s look at the Indianapolis properties:

Ford plant

The Ford Motor Co. Assembly Branch, 1301 E. Washington St., opened in 1915 and churned out 600,000 cars and trucks between by 1932. After 1932, Ford used the plant for parts service and auto sales into the 1940s.

The building has been mostly unused since the 1950s. Indianapolis Public Schools now owns the landmark, but uses only about 40 percent of the space for storage.

Angie’s List Inc. floated a $40 million plan to revive the building as its headquarters with help from $18.5 million in bond money from the city, but called off the plan in March 2015.

IPS is gearing up once again to market the 176,000-square-foot building

Southside Turnverein Hall

Designed by architects Vonnegut & Bohn and built in 1900, the hall at 306 Prospect St., thrived as a center of German culture, with a bowling alley, tavern, gym and meeting space.

Today, the largely vacant building’s gym rents by the hour and there’s a tavern in the basement. Indiana Landmarks says the German Renaissance Revival-style building needs urgent repairs and a new use that could lead to a restoration.

Rivoli Theatre

The theater opened in 1927 with decorative plaster walls and a domed ceiling above an auditorium that seated 1,500. Recent efforts have been made to preserve the property at 3155 E. 10th St., but the theater still needs significant investment. A legal battle regarding ownership also slowed preservation efforts.

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