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College Avenue in King Park: A Street in Transition

This time, the neighborhood won. The long battle over the gas station at the corner of 22nd and College has been dropped (page 57) in favor of a restaurant:

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This particular one will feature outdoor seating and a bicycle rack. It will renovate an old masonry structure, while removing a smaller structure which has outlived its materials. The curb cuts could use some fine tuning or elimination, and there could have been a smaller parking lot. The neighborhood is still battling the potential for carry out service for fear of a fast food joint. But at least it won’t be a future brownfield, and it will no longer house the large billboard.

As a frequent traveler down this street, I’ve noticed that there’s been more change happening in this stretch of College Avenue than I’ve ever seen in the past. Just in this small oblique photo from the zoning document, you can see 4 things that have changed in the past 4-5 years:

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On the southwest corner, a beautiful old church was demolished recently:

Photo Credit: Google Streetview

Photo Credit: Google Streetview

On the Southeast, a unique 3 story multi-use building was also sadly demolished:

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Meanwhile, on the northwest corner, the Gramse building has been lovingly renovated, while there are even more renovations ongoing just out of view. One block south, the old elementary school has hope for renovation as housing:

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At 24th and College, one of the more intriguing renovations is taking place, a pre-Prohibition-themed bar at a large commercial structure:

Photo Credit: Mosaic City

Photo Credit: Mosaic City

Hopefully the area is finished with demolishing great old buildings, but that remains to be seen. The commercial structure at 27th and College appears vacant with little activity. There are other places that could be lost with more years of neglect, but the list of significant historic mixed use structures has dwindled down to just a few. Almost everything else will either be a house or apartment renovation, or new construction.

So, what’s next? The proposed Red Line rapid transit plan does not travel down this section of College, for better or worse. Instead, this section will be connected to West 38th Street and Lafayette Square. King Park is a part of the Smart Growth district, which would connect with the proposed Green Line. For now, this neighborhood is less likely to be the beneficiary of concentrated high dollar investment. It may see more of the targeted renovations that have been occurring, thanks in large part to the King Park CDC.

Note: Thanks to Chris Corr for his help with the writing and information on this post.

15 Responses to “ “College Avenue in King Park: A Street in Transition”

  1. Chris Corr says:

    Things are slowly progressing over there on College, hopefully we’re about to turn the corner! Two quick comments:

    1. Though the 22nd and College siteplan doesn’t reflect it yet, the curb cut on 22nd will be reduced to 30′.

    2. TWG is currently working on a senior housing project for the former Morton School at 21st and College.

  2. Drew says:

    I was disappointed to see the Red Line won’t travel that route. You mentioned that’s for ‘better or worse’ — I’m curious, what’s the ‘better’ part?

  3. Carlie Turner says:

    Do we know what kind of restaurant the 22nd & College development is going to be? Also we live near the 24 & College “bar” development, we’re very much in wait and see mode on that project.

    • Chris Corr says:

      Carlie — no restaurants are lined up at this time. I think Kevin is just indicating that a restaurant is one goal tenants, given the proposed outdoor seating areas in the siteplan.

  4. T says:

    I wish you wouldn’t post about those demolitions… it’s just depressing, why on earth would that church have been demolished? makes no sense. The apartment building was cool but at least it kinda makes sense why that would go. As for the elementary school building, it’s being turned into senior housing, which is nice, i was worried that wing was going to be demolished. The city is far too trigger happy with demolitions where it doesn’t need to be and not trigger happy enough where it should be (houses…. there are so many houses that are beyond salvageable and yet they still sit there).

  5. Ryan W. says:

    I wish the project didn’t include a parking lot next to College but any redevelopment is welcome.

  6. Evan says:

    Good. I usually am very pro-development and don’t like seeing neighborhoods pick winner’s and losers in economic development.
    However our city has ENOUGH gas stations. Center Township has enough as well. There is ZERO need for gas stations anywhere in this city outside of Franklin Township in the future. Traders point is the only other logical option for a gas station.
    Otherwise Gas stations need to stop being proposed.

  7. jefferson owens says:

    Eric You sound really CountryBoyish and Stupid take Your Rural Boy Ass back to The Woods Boy, First of all You need Economic Growth in a City The Size of Indy I feel The City could have save some of Those Old Buildings however I can I see a nice Cvs DrugStore @ The Corner of 22nd & College on The Southeast Corner That could help Grow The Commercial in with The nice Old Historic Look of The New and Old Apartment Buildings I that College Avenue could be like The Sunset Strip of Indy Making College Avenue The Gateway from Downtown to Broad Ripple lets Face it Ladies and Gents The City(Indy)Becoming more Then just The Darling of The Midwest Its Becoming The Mecca of The Midwest after all it is in The Crossroads of America.

  8. No need for name-calling in the comments.

  9. Reagan Park is a neighborhood on the Eastern edge of King Park with boundaries of College Avenue on the west, 25th Street on the north, the Monon Trail on the east, and 22nd Street on the south. This neighborhood is ripe for redevelopment for housing and commercial development.

    • Andi says:

      I own a small vacant lot in Reagan Park and would love to sell it. I hope development picks up in that area. I’ve had the lot since 2009 and trying to maintain it in Texas (dumping, multiple lawn care services, etc.) is a pain.

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