Daleville works to create a new downtown
Daleville will soon be getting a makeover.
Since 2012, Daleville has been working to acquire blighted and abandoned properties for repurposing and demolition in hopes of attracting new businesses and creating community areas.
This is the third property in the area that the commission had acquired in the last year, as part of Daleville’s plan to create a new downtown.
Daleville Town Board President Tom Roberts says he hopes that new apartments and/or businesses that could take their place will bring people to the town and look nice for the entire county.
“We want people to look out and see grassy areas, instead of dilapidated buildings, deteriorating houses and things like that. We’re hoping that there will either be apartments, or new business activity, or it could even be a park, a small park that could be sitting there,” Roberts said. “So we don’t really have designs yet for it. We’re hoping someone will walk in and say ‘Hey let’s do something here,’ because of the other development we have promised. There are just lots of prospects for the future.”
Daleville has already approved the construction of the lower-income Salem Place apartments, and created a $4.2 million children’s water park adjacent to the town hall building.
Since Daleville does not have the funds to finance the projects on its own, the board has been working with the Delaware County Redevelopment Commission. Roberts says he believes this will help his town as well as the rest of the county.
“I’m hoping that we will get people to come to Daleville .. and I think this will be good for the county as well. We’re sitting here. We’re kind of the gateway to the south side of Delaware County into Muncie and Yorktown. So basically, we want to look nice for the people coming into Delaware County.”
Roberts said planning for the projects began as early as 2012 with the Daleville Town Board’s original visioning session.
The 1980 square foot house at 7809 Walnut Street had been abandoned for longer than two years, and had been a part of multiple tax sales.
Bookout said the Indianapolis couple who purchased the home as an investment initially hoped to flip it.
Although the couple was initially uninterested in selling the property, Bookout says they reached out to him and were able to work out a deal.
“It is just a visual unsightly structure at this time because it is abandoned … and the people who purchased it had not done any work to date,” Bookout said.
The commission acquired the home for $24,000, after two appraisals by both the owners and the commission were averaged.
The commission acquired a gas station, Lee Amoco, and a bike shop in front of the home earlier this year.
Demolition of the properties is already underway. After the gas station and bike shop are demolished, the newly acquired home will be visible from State Road 32.
After all of the demolition is completed, the area will be turned into green spaces and eventually community areas and, potentially, new businesses.
Roberts said there have been little-to-no complaints about this project.
“The only opposition was they thought it’s really close to the train tracks. That some people may not want to be that close when the train comes through and makes that noise. But we used to have apartments in the furniture store, which is down now, and it was well received at the time. And for a long time that was occupied,” Roberts said.
With a town that offers many employment opportunities, Roberts says he hopes that new apartments in this location will make people want to live and stay in Daleville.
“Believe it or not, Daleville actually doubles in size during the day. We go from about 1600 to 3200 people. That is why the apartments are such a positive, because people want to come and live, but there really is no where to come and live,” Roberts said.
Roberts says he hopes construction in the place of 7809 and the other acquired properties will begin next spring.