March 9, 2017 (STLRealEstate.News) One of the smaller, more interesting historic buildings in Indianapolis, Indiana was saved from uncertain demolition and destruction this week by historic preservationists. The building, an early White Castle, is located at St. Joseph neighborhood on a sliver of a lot at 660 Fort Wayne Avenue. It is Indianapolis’ oldest surviving White Castle to date, and it is accepted as the nation’s third oldest surviving White Castle.
Indiana Landmarks was behind the salvaging this week, and stated in a release that they purchased the landmark for only $1 from the city of Indianapolis. Landmarks plans to keep the castle and sell it to someone who promises to leave the brick exterior as is and do the necessary rehabilitation work. Mark Dollase of Landmarks said the rehabilitation work isn’t as much as it appears. Despite being empty for close to a decade now, it really only needs a few touch-ups, as the building’s roof and electrical system is still fairly new.
As predicted, only a few days after Landmarks reclaimed the property did they start getting multiple calls from potential buyers. One buyer in particular mentioned interest in turning the castle into a restaurant and several others called about wanting to use it for offices. Landmarks is a non-for-profit organization dedicated to protecting and educating the community on historic buildings and settings in Indianapolis.
The White Castle was erected in 1927, one of the three White Castles that opened in Indianapolis during that year. The others were located at 639 N. Illinois St. and 302 Virginia Ave. The other two have not made it to 2017, but fortunately for Landmarks, this one on Fort Wayne Avenue is going to make it.
The White Castle has had vacancy problems for over 40 years now, and will finally have an excited owner in just a few weeks’ time.