LOCATION: Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
OLD USE: Church, school
NEW USE: Residential condos
Meridian Arch first started as the Meridian Street Methodist Episcopal Church in Indianapolis. The church was completed in 1906 using Indiana limestone in the style of French Gothic architecture. At that time, the front of the church had two large spires on either front corner. The congregation eventually left the building after growth required a larger facility. Indiana Business College then took over the site in 1947 and added offices and classrooms. The college then required additional space and moved out in 2003.
The site was (re)adapted by Hearthview Residential. Although their initial plans called for demolishing the church, community activists and the Indianapolis Historic Preservation Commission quickly had the building placed on Historic Individual Property status. Hearthview quickly and without argument altered their plans to adapt the existing building instead.
The new Meridian Arch offers the community a new lease on life. Respecting the building’s place and effect within the area’s social fabric, the new residences easily mix within the neighborhood. It is surrounded by the Veterans Memorial Plaza and new Central Library. The building now offers 27 condos for this community. “Although the alterations have made the church ineligible for the National Register, they made it eligible to remain a living, contributing building to the city. That was a good trade off.”