Downtown Terre Haute’s New Look Getting Even Better

We named Terre Haute as our 2010 Community of the Year. Why? Because the community has made remarkable strides in becoming a better place to live — and attract visitors. Now, even more good news comes out of the Wabash Valley, and the city’s focus on downtown development gets a boost from Thompson Thrift Development. Thompson Thrift is a company we’re proud to call an active Indiana Chamber member, and we can’t wait to see how its new project will enhance Terre Haute’s progress even further.

Thompson Thrift Development, Inc., announced plans (March 15) to construct a new three-story professional office building at 925 Wabash Avenue that would serve as yet another building block in redeveloping the eastern edge of downtown Terre Haute. Construction is scheduled to begin in July of this year and be completed by May 2012.

The building will increase the opportunity for businesses to lease Class A office space in downtown. Its anchor tenants will be Old National Insurance and Emmis Communications (HI 99 and 105.5 The River) of Terre Haute. Space is still available in the building, and additional tenants will be announced as leases are signed. Anyone interested in leasing space in the building should call Thompson Thrift at (812) 235-5959.

"This new building is an ideal location for Old National Insurance as we continue to grow and expand," said Steve Danielson, region president for Old National Insurance. "Our 43 associates are delighted we will continue to be in downtown Terre Haute in such an attractive work space. We look forward to welcoming our clients to our new home."

"The decision by these two important local entities to relocate their operations to the new building and serve as anchor tenants reinforces our belief in the project’s value," said Paul Thrift, president of Thompson Thrift Development. "Old National Insurance and Emmis have been fixtures in the community for many years, and their continued commitment to downtown as demonstrated by their decisions to maintain their presence downtown is a positive development for the city. We are pleased to welcome them both."

The announcement represents another major milestone in the redevelopment of Terre Haute’s downtown area.

"We’re excited that Thompson Thrift has chosen to take another significant step forward in helping revitalize the city’s downtown," said Cliff Lambert, executive director of Terre Haute’s Department of Redevelopment. "This new building represents the sort of vision and investment in the future necessary for the community’s continued growth. Projects such as this reinforce the city’s status as Indiana’s ‘Community of the Year.’ "

The structure will be located on the southeast corner of Wabash and 9 1/2 Street. Plans call for the building to have a footprint of 11,000 square feet with a total of 33,000 square feet of leasable space.

"Adding this office building, with its extensively landscaped site, to the new Federal Building and the renovated Clabber Girl, St. Benedict’s Church and 901 Wabash will effectively create a campus-like anchor for the east end of downtown," said Paul Thrift, president of Thompson Thrift Development.

"Not only will the new building have a positive economic impact for the city, it represents another attractive new structure in the downtown area," he added. "The structure has been specifically designed to be complementary in look and feel to other buildings in that part of downtown."

The building will feature a masonry facade and will incorporate urban architectural features. Walkways and streets linked to the new structure’s site will feature plantings and brick pavers to tie the area together and enhance its aesthetics. To further boost the site’s attractiveness, existing utility poles will be removed and lines will be moved underground. In addition, the long-vacant lot on the northeast corner of 9th and Ohio streets will be improved as part of the project.

The site is within Terre Haute’s C-8 Downtown Business District, which is the city’s major center for finance, retail, professional offices and other services.

"We have made a great deal of progress over the past several years in terms of bringing downtown back. This has been accomplished through renovating and restoring older structures and building new ones," said Lambert.

"It’s gratifying to look around downtown and see improvements such as the Children’s Museum, two new hotels, a new bookstore, a renovated 901 Wabash Building and the work done at Clabber Girl," he added. "We are looking forward to completing another facet of downtown’s revitalization with this new office building and the opportunities for growth it will create."

The project is subject to the necessary approvals and support from the city of Terre Haute.

"We have been working closely with Mayor Bennett and Cliff Lambert of the city’s Department of Redevelopment to make this project a reality," said Thrift. "Without their interest and support, this undertaking would not have been possible."

Thompson Thrift Construction, Inc., will serve as the general contractor for the project.

Thompson Thrift is a full-service real estate development and construction company with offices in Terre Haute, Indianapolis and Carmel. It is currently involved in projects in eight states and in more than 30 cities across Indiana. The company employs 121 people.

Oh, and while we’re focusing on Terre Haute, congrats on a great season and NCAA tournament berth to the Missouri Valley Conference Champion Indiana State Sycamores!