Indianapolis Public Schools is set to approve the sale of its 4.5-acre property at the corner of East 16th and Yandes streets, setting the stage for a mixed-use residential and commercial development on the site.
The school district’s facilities management department currently occupies the property, but IPS is selling the site as part of a larger effort to rid itself of surplus real estate.
Indianapolis-based TWG Development LLC emerged as the high bidder of five proposals for the property last month, submitting a bid of $2.75 million. An internal IPS committee has recommended that the school district sell the property to TWG, and the IPS Board of School Commissioners is expected to vote on the issue at a Feb. 22 meeting.
In the bid packet submitted to IPS, TWG outlined plans for 268 apartment units, 80 percent of which would be market-rate rentals. (Click image at right for larger view of conceptual plan.) The other 20 percent would be income-restricted units for residents whose household income is at or below 80 percent of area median income. (For an individual, that means an income of no more than $39,150.)
Another eight or so housing units would be designated as affordable housing for IPS teachers and staff. The preliminary site plan shows eight single-family homes for this purpose.
TWG’s plans also include adding 5,000 square feet of retail space in an existing building along 16th Street and turning another building into an indoor parking area.
For the broad strokes of the project, TWG would repurpose existing buildings and building two new four-story apartment buildings. The preliminary estimate for the cost of the whole project is $40 million.
It’s too early, however, to say how closely the final result will follow these specific plans, TWG co-founder Tony Knoble told IBJ.
One variable: The area where TWG plans to build the affordable teacher/staff housing is just south of 15th Street, in a parcel adjacent to I-70.
This section of the interstate is part of the Indiana Department of Transportation’s planned North Split project, which calls for reconstructing the entire interchange and adding lanes of traffic.
INDOT has not yet released the final details of how the $250 million project will look. Local residents and the Indy Chamber have called on INDOT to look at alternatives to its early plans.
Before TWG finalizes its plans for that part of the property, “We need to understand exactly what’s going to happen,” Knoble said.
TWG does have time to figure things out.
Knoble said IPS will need to continue using the property through this fall, and the sale’s closing likely won’t happen until January 2019. In the meantime, TWG will work on pulling together project financing.
Construction should begin in the first quarter of 2019, Knoble said, and construction should last for 15-18 months. That would put the development ready for occupancy in the summer or fall of 2020.
The East 16th Street corridor is in the midst of a renaissance, with new or redeveloped restaurants, housing and work spaces opening from Meridian Street to well east of the Monon Trail. IPS has owned its property since the 1920s.