49th and Penn: the latest

Dateline: Thu 25 Jun 2009

For Nothsiders, especially residents of Meridian-Kessler, the 49th Street/Pennsylvania block of businesses has been a mainstay.

But since the sale of all the buildings on the corner -- owned by the owners of Hamaker Pharmacy, which closed -- many of us have speculated about the corner's future....mainstay has migrated into mystery.

Now, from a source inside the Meridian-Kessler Neighborhood Association, comes this news:

The new owner (of the buildings), Eclipse, plans to make facade improvements to the buildings and grounds.  Patachou (restaurant) would expand into the Hamaker corner and also the space vacated by the Landrigan realty business. 

Patachou will add outside dining on the 49th St. side and also evening hours and a two-way liquor license. 

The longtime dry cleaners (Meridian Heights) will probably move.

Emmett's, the hair salon, is moving to 54th and College in space vacated by a lighting and lamp business on the SE corner of 54th and College. 

There is speculation that the evening hours of Patachou may have a different name and menu, like pizzas and other Italian dishes.  MKNA has approved the variances requested, as has the Meridian Street Preservation Commission and the Meridian Street Foundation.

Next step is getting approvals from the city and the Board of Zoning Appeals. 

That's the official word. We need more information on why the dry cleaners, a tenant for 75 years, has to relocate; there is some concern that one of the investors is the owner of a competing dry cleaner, which is pushing the longtime cleaners out. Also, what will happen to D and Z Gifts,. your go-to place for flowers and cards?

Despite these concerns, including others that have been voiced by nearby residents regarding parking, it's impressive that the various bodies -- MKNA, the preservation commission and the foundation -- have approved the variances. The thinking is that it is better to have a corner with a "vibrant business node" than one without much activity. That's hard to argue down.




hendy [unverified] said:

The cleaners has been hit with a parking problem there for years. If I were them, I'd move, too. Cafe Patachou is the big dog on that corner and its traffic overwhelms most of the businesses there. Yes, I like the Cafe, but it's also a crappy corner for parking.

2009-06-25 07:19:13

Tom Greenacres [unverified] said:

"a crappy corner for parking."

I intend no observation directed at you, hendy, but: when did we all get so *#!X*! lazy that having to walk a couple blocks from a parking space became unacceptable. I have observed people driving endlessly around the block just so they don't have to park "too far," i.e. more than a block away. And it has nothing to do with feeding a meter- drivers do this in unmetered spaces. Observe traffic in any large shopping center parking lot: drivers would rather park cheek-to-jowel between other cars, virtually guaranteeing door dimples, than park in a more open area of the lot.

People complain about parking in Broad Ripple, but there is no place that cannot be easily reached by a 5-minute walk from your car.

Lazy butts!

2009-06-25 09:03:11

John Howard [unverified] said:

Growing up in Beech Grove, it was normal and common to walk several blocks to Main St. to buy anything from a bottle of milk (heavy glass bottle, not lightweight plastic!) to a business suit.

Yes, people have become lazy - or spoiled.

2009-06-25 09:12:21

jersey [Member] said:

Lazy...spoiled??? Heck, we can't even get out of our cars to get a freaking donut!
At least walk in so that you feel as though you may have burned a calorie or two...

2009-06-25 19:19:24

hendy [unverified] said:

I don't mind parking somewhere else. But take a look at what happens there-- people jam that place and won't even park across the street (at a better coffee place, btw).

Federal judges, district attorneys, heads of this and that, all eat cinnamon toast at Cafe Patachou. These are important people that need important parking places, even if they're in front of dry cleaners that need quick in/out spaces.

Watch what happens this winter when it snows. It's pretty comical to watch that side parking lot when there's a few inches of dusty stuff out there. I know-- I watch it from across the street.

2009-06-26 22:50:06

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