After sitting empty for more than two years, a former Franklin grocery store building has a plan for new life.
The former Marsh store, 1172 N. Main St., could soon become an attraction for kids’ birthday parties and get-togethers. Urban Air Indiana wants to remodel the building and use it for an indoor trampoline park, according to a proposal filed with the city.
The group would invest about $1.2 million into the building, property and equipment for the attraction. They are asking for a six-year tax break from the city.
In addition, the group also is planning to ask the Franklin Redevelopment Commission for just under $10,000 to help repair the parking lot and is working with the Franklin Development Corp. on a grant to redo the facade of the building, the filing with the city said.
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Their goal is to open the new facility by March.
The attraction would be a boost for Franklin, bringing in visitors from surrounding counties, and would fix up a vacant building that people constantly ask about, Franklin Mayor Joe McGuinness said.
The property has been empty since the grocery store closed in 2014 and recently was sold at auction to a new owner. The previous owner had not shown any interest in redeveloping the property, and officials have long hoped to see something new go there, McGuinness said.
McGuinness first met with the company owners, a Martinsville couple, to discuss their idea in June, and liked the concept, he said.
City planning officials recommended the economic development commission approve the company’s tax break request because the proposal is a good fit for the community, the filing said.
According to the company’s plans, they would invest $500,000 in jumping equipment and $10,000 in IT equipment. Rehabilitating the building is expected to cost about $500,000, with another $145,000 to relocate the heating and air conditioning system and $51,000 to relocate the sprinkler system so the ceiling could be heightened, according to the filing with the city.
The new facility would create two full-time jobs and several part-time jobs, the filing said.
The company expects to bring in customers from around Indianapolis and central Indiana.
Trampoline parks have grown in popularity in recent years, and another company, Sky Zone, has locations in Plainfield and Fishers and is planning to open a new location near Southport Road and Interstate 65.