Article written by Al Stilley, editor of The Southsider Voice, and reposted with permission.
Beech Grove is finally on the move with the first phase of development of all 115 acres at the old CSX rail property. The Brownfield-related property was sold in early July to the Indianapolis-based Real Estate Recover Capital (RERC) at Emerson Avenue and Subway Drive in Beech Grove.
On Oct. 22, Beech Grove Mayor Dennis Buckley announced that Milestone Contractors LP will relocate its headquarters from South Belmont Avenue to 30 acres on the newly acquired land. Buckley foresees the remainder of the property that had been vacant for years to be utilized as an industrial/commercial site that is already zoned industrial and has significant rail access.
“Companies want to invest in Beech Grove,” Buckley said in an interview with The Southsider Voice. “This opens the door for that area. Milestone will bring 110 existing jobs here and 25 new jobs.” Milestone expects to spend $11 million to build its new headquarters and maintenance hub that includes a 25,000-sqare-foot office and 52,000 square foot garage.
Construction is expected to begin late this year and be finished in 2021. The Metropolitan Development Commission is expected to okay a five-year tax abatement that Beech Grove Council supports at its Nov. 6 meeting.
Buckley explained that it applies only to future buildings and not property or equipment. He added that the property will go on the property tax roles in 2020 and that the previous owners had not paid any taxes on the undeveloped property. With Milestone and Amazon XL developments in Beech Grove, Buckley sees a continued rise in redevelopment in the municipality. Amazon XL is developing property at 6057 Churchman Bypass into a 5,000 square foot building for large item deliveries that also will bring more jobs to Beech Grove. Buckley said that construction on the Churchman Bypass roundabout will assist in traffic movement in the area of Amazon XL.
Work is to begin next spring on a $1.7 million roundabout at Arlington Avenue and Churchman Bypass. A roundabout also is planned at Arlington and Hanna avenues. Due to recent traffic accidents at Victory Drive and Emerson Avenue, Buckley said that INDOT is now interested in improvements at that intersection. Looking at enhancing Beech Grove, Buckley emphasized that the development of walking trails that connect throughout the city will be an amenity that homebuyers seek.