JULIAN WYLLIE | EDITOR-IN-CHIEF
Michael Kaltenmark, director of external relations, led an open forum discussing the new multi-use parking facility this evening in the Howard L. Schrott Center for the Arts.
Members of the Butler-Tarkington Neighborhood Association partnered with the university to host the event.
Kaltenmark said university leadership is seeking feedback from Butler-Tarkington community members in regards to 15,000 square feet of retail space which will occupy the first floor of the building.
Kaltenmark wrote a letter encouraging homeowners in the neighborhood to attend the event and voice any of their opinions or concerns.
Approximately 25 people were at the forum.
Ben Hunter, chief of staff and chief of Butler police, provided details for the new parking garage.
CBRE Indianapolis, a commercial real estate firm, is partnering with the university to contract new businesses.
Five letters of interest for retail space have already been submitted.
Hunter said the parking garage may have two sandwich restaurants, two pizza restaurants and one full-service locally based restaurant.
The names of the businesses that have expressed interest in the retail space could not be disclosed at this time.
Hunter said students and other members of the community will have avenues to provide more feedback in the coming months.
Going forward, the Butler Business Consulting Group will create a survey to receive feedback from the community to help determine which businesses should be chosen for the retail space.
“There’s no complaint too little or small to let us know about,” Hunter said.
In addition, the Butler-Tarkington Neighborhood Association established a committee to represent the surrounding homeowner’s interests.
Hunter said he would not oppose having alcohol served in the restaurants but appropriate parameters will be taken to prevent underage consumption of alcohol.
When the garage opens in August, all of the retail space may not be open according to Hunter.
As of now, the use of Dawg Bucks and flex dollars in the restaurants have not yet been approved, but the university intends to use the retail space to benefit students’ educational opportunities.
The parking garage is on schedule to open in August and the university intends to break ground on Monday, March 2.
More open forums will continue to be held on a monthly basis at the Health and Recreation Complex with the Butler-Tarkington Neighborhood Association, according to the letter.
Meeting times are listed below:
Monday, February 23: 6:00-7:00 p.m.
Tuesday, February 24: 7:30-8:30 a.m.
Monday, March 23: 6:00-7:00 p.m.
Tuesday, March 24: 7:30-8:30 a.m.
Monday, April 27: 6:00-7:00 p.m.
Tuesday, April 28: 7:30-8:30 a.m.
Thursday, May 28: 6:00-7:00 p.m.
Friday, May 29: 7:30-8:30 a.m.
Monday, June 22: 6:00-7:00 p.m.
Tuesday, June 23: 7:30-8:30 a.m.
*All of the open forums will be held in the HRC conference room and parking is available in the Hinkle Fieldhouse lot.