CARMEL, Ind. (WISH) – The intersection at Carmel Drive and Rangeline Road is a ‘Gateway to the city of Carmel’.
An old warehouse sits near the northwest corner of that intersection. Bright red letters spelling out ‘Party Event Rental’ recall the building’s final use. But, the building is empty now and it is not what Mayor Jim Brainard wants people to see as they enter the city, not a couple blocks away from the Palladium.
The city is working with a developer, Anderson Birkla Investment Partners, on a redesign of the property. The warehouse could be replaced with a combination of office, retail and residential space.
Brainard said, with such changes, the land could be more effectively used than it is now.
For several years, Carmel has been working on a replacement for the site. The economy has improved enough to renew the discussions.
The city had talks with another developer, before Anderson Birkla. Brainard said for the first developer, the warehouse site may not have been at the top of their priority list.
The city owns the warehouse and Brainard said Carmel is not collecting any tax money from the land. So, “it would be a huge increase in the tax revenue,” Brainard told 24-Hour News 8.
The deal is also likely to come with a requirement that Anderson Birkla invest in a small park and a city street as part of its commitment to the project.
Brainard said “We would get about $13 million in public infrastructure and we’d waive about $4 million in the value in the building and the land that we own.”
He said that works out to a lot more than we paid for the building.
The designs aren’t finished yet, because Brainard said he wants “a little bit more green space.”
He sounded confident that city planners and the developers can create a plan that appeals to both sides.
The project would then need the approval of Carmel’s Redevelopment Commission and the City Council.