News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Editorials

February 26, 2014

EDITORIAL: More welcome news for downtown

Deming Center project provides another boost

TERRE HAUTE — An average game of dominoes lasts about a half-hour.

The process of reviving a city’s downtown district — to the point that people desire to live there — requires far more time. Years. Maybe decades. Terre Haute has endured that frustrating, unpredictable scenario, but finally, gradually the necessary dominoes are tumbling. Their momentum is real, and more goals could fall into place as a result.

An Indianapolis firm specializing in refurbishing historic structures plans to make over Deming Center, creating upper-floor apartments for primarily Indiana State University students and first-floor commercial shops and businesses. The project by Core Redevelopment begins a new chapter in the life of the century-old building, currently used as a subsidized housing unit for more than 100 low-income elderly and handicapped folks.

The aged state of Deming Center prompted a decision last year by the Terre Haute Housing Authority to move the residents to a new Warren Village apartment unit at 1300 N. 25th St. by the end of 2014. The plan left the future uncertain for Deming, which spent the first 50 years of its existence as a ritzy hotel. The doubts faded, though, when Core Redevelopment expressed its interest. On Monday night, the Housing Authority board of directors agreed to sell Deming Center to Core for $800,000. The company intends to begin a $5.3-million renovation as soon as the current residents move to Warren Village, and expects new tenants to start moving in by autumn of 2015.

Once Deming reaches full occupancy again, downtown Terre Haute could have 600 residents. The current population of the district — which spans from Third Street east to the 10th Street railroad tracks, and from Poplar Street north to Cherry Street — stands at about 300 people, according to calculations by Todd Nation, city councilman and downtown businessman.

A separate $18.7-million public-private project, already under way, will construct four stories of housing for ISU students and first-floor commercial spaces on the 500 block of Wabash Avenue. Thompson Thrift Development expects its completion by July 2015. Private owners of other downtown buildings are remodeling upper-floor apartments as well, Nation said.

The cumulative effect of new residents downtown is “all welcome news,” Nation said.

At some point, the constant presence of those people, coupled with others staying in the Center City apartments and the two downtown hotels — the Hilton Garden Inn and Candlewood Suites — may lead to long-awaited services in the district, such as evening hours for most restaurants, additional shops, groceries, and 24-hour diners and coffee houses. Supply meets demand, as the economic adage goes. “The more people we get living down here, the closer we get to those amenities we’d like to have,” Nation said.

No single element has pushed downtown Terre Haute toward that tipping point. Controversy engulfed several initiatives, from Center City to the demolition of the deteriorated Terre Haute House. Those debates spawned a healthy byproduct — the public’s needs, wants, concerns and ideas got aired. The puzzle continues to evolve. It is inspiring to know Deming Center, thanks to its uninterrupted usage, will fill a significant spot in that picture. In its heyday, the hotel included several shops, eateries and fine dining spots. Its revival brings the downtown district closer to reacquiring those missing pieces.

 

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Editorials
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    July 3, 2014

  • Editorial: Texting law serves safety

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  • EDITORIAL: A proud moment for Vigo County

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    June 25, 2014

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    June 21, 2014

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    June 19, 2014

  • EDITORIAL: More needed from Speaker

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    June 17, 2014

  • tstribunestar EDITORIAL: Enticing more students back to campus a worthwhile initiative

    Of all of the educational initiatives paraded before Indiana residents in recent years — some ideas worthy, others flops — none seems more timely or more on point than one approved by the Indiana Commission for Higher Education last week.

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  • EDITORIAL: Celebrating local success

    It’s always an uplifting occasion when good things happen to good people. And so we join in the celebration of three people who this week achieved a new level of success and recognition for their professional and personal contributions to life in Terre Haute and the Wabash Valley.

    June 12, 2014

  • EDITORIAL: Shoring up the VA

    How America cares for its veterans is indicative of its values as a nation. We’re confident the vast majority of citizens agree that health care for military vets through the country’s network of VA hospitals should meet or exceed common-sense expectations.

    June 11, 2014

  • Editorial: Playing the Nazi card

    There was good news to report from the Indiana Republican Party Convention conducted last weekend in Fort Wayne. The GOP nominated three women to top its general election ballot in November. There isn’t much gender equity in Hoosier politics, so seeing these three rise to the top of the Republican ballot this year is refreshing. But perhaps the best news is that Richard Mourdock, two-term state treasurer and unsuccessful candidate for U.S. Senate in 2012, will no longer hold public office at the end of this year.

    June 10, 2014

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    June 7, 2014

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    June 5, 2014 2 Stories

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    NORMANDY BEACHHEAD, June 16, 1944 — I took a walk along the historic coast of Normandy in the country of France.
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    June 4, 2014

  • EDITORIAL: Remembering D-Day — in the words of Ernie Pyle

    NORMANDY BEACHHEAD, June 12, 1944 — Due to a last-minute alteration in the arrangements, I didn’t arrive on the beachhead until the morning after D-day, after our first wave of assault troops had hit the shore. By the time we got here the beaches had been taken and the fighting had moved a couple of miles inland. All that remained on the beach was some sniping and artillery fire, and the occasional startling blast of a mine geysering brown sand into the air. That plus a gigantic and pitiful litter of wreckage along miles of shoreline.

    June 3, 2014

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    May 31, 2014 1 Photo 2 Stories

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    May 29, 2014

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