Carmel moving forward with plans to transform PNC Bank lot into mixed-use development

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For years, Carmel Mayor Jim Brainard has said that eventually he would like to see a mixed-use development built at the northeast corner of Range Line Road and Main Street in the Carmel Arts & Design District, which is currently a parking lot for PNC Bank.

Now, he said plans are moving forward and architectural designs have been drafted by Studio M Architecture & Planning, which is located directly across the street from the proposed project.

Brainard said he has a letter of intent with PNC Bank to buy its land, demolish its building and construct a new home for PNC inside a multi-level, mixed-use development, similar to Sophia Square or other buildings on West Main Street. Brainard said a private developer hasn’t been finalized, but there have been talks with a local company. No timeline or cost estimate has been released.

Brainard said PNC would likely move into its new space before its current building is demolished but noted that it’s also possible that PNC would choose to work out of a different location during construction.

The new development would come up to the corner but would still allow for public plaza space, according to the architectural sketches.

The project would include condos, retail, office space and a parking structure, Brainard said.

Woody’s Library Restaurant would not be demolished. It’s possible that Woody’s back parking lot could no longer be needed since there would be sufficient space for parking at the new development. The sketches allow for Woody’s to build a beer garden where its parking lot currently sits.

The City of Carmel is working to obtain property to help the project along, Brainard said, including the building that houses WRP Investments at 30 E Main St. He said the city also could demolish the old municipal court building at 15 First Ave. N.E., which houses tenants such as the Carmel Theater Company, and turn it into a parking area. He said the city will help the current tenants find new locations.

With this new development in the works, Brainard said it’s likely that the intersection of Range Line Road and Main Street will never become a roundabout and will keep its traffic light, which is appropriate since it was one of the first in the country.

“We could literally become a one-stoplight town one day,” he said.

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