The site of a warehouse that was demolished by a weekend fire is getting new life.
The Van Buren Street facility near Fountain Square was mostly destroyed by a blaze late Sunday night that is believed to be a case of arson.
Investigators are still looking into the incident, but the site won’t be in shambles for long.
The Marion County Commissioners signed off a deal with GSS LLC to purchase the property for $130,000.
Attorney Mary Soloda says the plan is to build a $12-million, 70-unit senior housing complex.
"The fire will definitely have an impact," she said. "It’s just a shame that brick structures that had quite a bit of history attached will no longer likely be available for renovation. However, the good news is, there appears to be two other buildings that will available to be reutilized and rehabilitated and we are excited about that prospect."
Assistant Administrator of Brownfield Redevelopment Steven Meyer says the area has yearned for this type of project even before the fire.
"We’re excited about the prospect of having not only a lot of senior apartments there, but also that it will go into a site that otherwise would not be cleaned up and continue to be a blight on that neighborhood."
Solada says the fire will cause some delays, but expects construction to begin by next August.
Phase one is the senior complex, there could be a second phase with family housing, but details are not yet finalized
She believes it’s a perfect fit for the area.
"It’s nine acres in a highly populated area," she said. "It’s an area that is very much in need of senior housing. The demographics of the community are heavily weighted towards seniors and many seniors don’t like to leave their area when they retire as they age. So, we just think there is a terrific opportunity."
The project still needs approval of the Metropolitan Development Commission and City County Council.