A local engineering firm is moving its headquarters to Speedway as part of the redevelopment of a historic building on the town’s revitalized Main Street.
Wilcox Environmental Engineering Inc. announced Wednesday that it would be the first and largest tenant in a two-story, 16,000-square-foot project that involves renovating the Rosner Drugstore building at 1552 W. Main St. Roughly 3,500 square feet on the ground floor would remain available for lease.
Wilcox expects to move in November from its current location at 5757 W. 74th St. on the northwest side. Founded in 1994, the firm has 42 local employees (55 total) and plans to add at least 10 more before moving.
“With our ongoing need for additional staff, we anticipate this new facility and location will be an attractive incentive for candidates to join the Wilcox team,” President Chris Bonniwell said in prepared remarks.
Wilcox’s $10.5 million in local billings last year ranks it as the Indianapolis area’s 17th-largest engineering firm.
Indianapolis-based developer Paradigm Real Estate Investments is repurposing the Rosner building as part of the $2.5 million project. Paradigm bought it from the town of Speedway in December 2014 for $75,000.
“This project shows that Main Street is not only a vibrant destination, but also a great place to grow a business,” said David Lindley, Speedway’s town council president, in a statement.
An official groundbreaking ceremony is set for May 17.
The historic Rosner building is the oldest commercial structure on Speedway’s Main Street. It was constructed by Joseph Rosner in 1915 and was operated by Rosner’s grandsons until 1983. The Rosner name can still be seen on the building.
The building housed the Speedway Town Press upon the town’s purchase of it nine years ago. More recently, the town had leased the building to the Speedway Arts Centre.
Refurbishing the Rosner building is just one element of Speedway’s grand plan to revitalize Main Street.
Completion of a $10 million streetscape project and $7 million Dallara chassis facility in 2011 helped jumpstart activity.
A year later, the former Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing team opened a $2.7 million, 37,000-square-foot headquarters now occupied by Ed Carpenter Racing. Fisher and husband Andy O’Gara followed that up last month with the opening of the 60,000-square-foot Speedway Indoor Karting and 1911 Grill.
Also, Daredevil Brewing Co. built a 10,000-square-foot production brewery and tap room on a two-acre lot at the southeast corner of West Main and Gilman streets. And Big Woods is set to open its 7,500-square-foot restaurant May 9 at 10th and Main streets.