Does anyone out there remember what the 1000 block of S. 17th Street (that's 17th Street just below Carpenter) looked like ten years ago? We do, but for those that weren't paying attention, here's a look thanks to the magic of the Google Maps Time Machine function.
So yeah, that's pretty terrible. This block had exactly two occupied buildings, four vacant and blighted structures, and a whole mess of vacant land. Within a year or two, the vacant buildings got demoed, which made the block much less creepy but added to the number of vacant lots on the block.
So we were understandably excited back in 2011 when plans for Carpenter Square first surfaced and we learned that the eastern side of this block would be fully developed. We've tracked the construction of this project over the years, through two phases of residential construction and finally a mixed-use building at the corner of 17th & Carpenter. That building, and the courtyard in front of it, now look to be ready for action and word has it that a couple of businesses are currently in the mix for the space.
As buyers started moving into Carpenter Square, you'd have to think they wondered if and when the large vacant lot across the street would get redeveloped. In the summer of 2014, we learned that the City had picked developers for this site, with plans for eight duplexes. Then nothing happened for awhile and we considered the possibility that the project wasn't gonna happen. Finally, this past winter, we discovered that site work had begun and checking in the other day we spied a row of framed-out duplexes.
A decade can be like an eternity for a city block, especially when it's laden with vacant lots and located in a desirable neighborhood. Comparing our first photo with a current image shows just how much the block has changed.
Maybe toward the end of the year, once the duplexes are approaching completion, we'll go through this exercise again. It's a safe bet that things will have changed significantly in just a short period of time.