Developer scraps $1.38B plan for former GM stamping plant site

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.-- The future of the site of the former General Motors stamping plant is uncertain once again.

On Friday, Ambrose Property Group decided to scrap plans for a mixed-use development called Waterside, and sell the property.

The project would have revamped the former GM stamping plant on the western edge of downtown Indianapolis. In a statement, Ambrose Property Group noted the sale was prompted by a change in direction for the company.

"Ambrose Property Group is repositioning its business to focus on e-commerce and industrial development both in Indianapolis and nationally," the group said. "We believe that a focused approach on one segment of real estate development is best for our investors, our clients, employees and the communities where we invest."

Waterside was expected to be a $1.38 billion development, including 1,350 residential units, 620 hotel rooms, 2.75 million sq. ft. of office space and 100,000 sq. ft. of retail and 12,000 jobs.

An international design competition for the site is underway. Concepts for the future of the site are set to be revealed to the public on Oct. 2.

Mayor Joe Hogsett's office issued this statement:

“Today’s announcement that Ambrose does not intend to move forward with their plans for the former GM stamping plant is disappointing, but does not dampen our optimism and commitment to this site and the surrounding neighborhoods. We intend to use all available tools to ensure that the future of this parcel will live up to the years of planning that has occurred and the ongoing White River Vision Plan.”

Aasif Bade, founder and CEO of Ambrose Property Group, issued this statement on Facebook:

Dear Indianapolis,

In May 2017, we were selected to redevelop the former General Motors stamping plant site. Since then, we’ve operated with the mindset that the potential of the site is much greater when we surround ourselves with the best people and organizations—like The Valley neighborhood, Central Indiana Community Foundation and so many others. Together with these groups, we’ve advanced important conversations about placemaking, designing for equity and inclusion, and developing with the community rather than to the community.

If the site could talk, it would tell stories of when stamping plant employees started here nearly 100 years ago. And it would tell exciting stories another 100 years from now that we cannot even begin to imagine today. The opportunities for this site are so much bigger than Ambrose.

That’s why I’m writing to update the local community of Ambrose’s decision to focus our business on e-commerce and industrial development both in Indianapolis and nationally. We believe that a focused approach on one segment of real estate development is best for our investors, our clients, employees and the communities where we invest. As part of this decision, we plan to pursue the sale of our mixed-use and office projects, including Waterside.

We thank members of The Valley and West Indy for their engagement over the past several years. We are proud of the work we’ve done together, and we look forward to seeing what will come from the largest redevelopment opportunity in our city’s history.

The site, located within an Opportunity Zone, is now poised for success and we expect significant interest from developers locally and nationally. Once a new owner is identified, we hope they will be warmly welcomed by the community and be afforded consideration for necessary incentives from the city and state - as we have - that align with a project of this size and scope.

We are - and will remain - committed to our city and state through important development projects, active civic involvement and strategic philanthropy. We are proud of our work and we look forward to what the future holds for us as a community-minded and customer-centric company.
Sincerely,

Aasif Bade
Founder and CEO
Ambrose Property Group

Video from a previous story below:

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