Historic Indy Building to Receive New Life

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(photo courtesy Indiana Landmarks) (photo courtesy Indiana Landmarks)

The Indianapolis Public Schools Board has approved the sale of the historic Ford Assembly Branch building on the city's near east side. Indy-based TWG Development LLC has purchased the building for $1.65 million and says it will invest nearly $45 million to turn the property into a mixed-use development.

IPS previously used the building for warehouse, fulfillment and delivery purposes. The board decided to sell last year after determining the district no longer had use for the facility.

A spokesman for TWG tells Inside INdiana Business the company plans to perform a "complete historic rehabilitation" to make the building look as it did in 1914. Known as The Assembly, the first floor will be used for TWG's office, a coffee shop, restaurant space and potentially a museum dedicated to Indiana automobiles. The remaining floors will be transformed into market rate rental apartments.

TWG says it plans to close on the building this summer begin construction in late summer or early fall. The redevelopment is expected to be complete by December 2018. 

The building served as the Ford Assembly Branch that manufactured cars and trucks between 1915 and 1932, according to Indiana Landmarks. Ford used the building for parts service and auto sales until the 1940s. IPS purchased the building in the 1970s. Indianapolis-based Angie's List (Nasdaq: ANGI) announced plans in 2014 to buy the building and transform it into the company's new headquarters, but later withdrew.

The building was included on Indiana Landmarks' 10 Most Endangered places in Indiana last year.

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