Developers sought to save area church

Daily Reporter staff reports

CUMBERLAND — Cumberland officials are reaching out to area developers in hopes of finding a partner to help them save the historic St. John United Church of Christ from demolition.

Officials with the town are issuing a request for information to more than 50 private developers and organizations to determine interest in an adaptive reuse for the 100-year-old church on German Church Road and East Washington Street, officials said.

“We’d like to be in a position to make an attractive offer to the current owners in order to save the building and put it on the tax rolls,” town manager Andrew Klinger said.

But church officials already have accepted an offer from Pittsburgh-based Giant Eagle. However, the offer is contingent on the city rezoning the area to allow Giant Eagle to put a gas station on the property.

The Indianapolis Metropolitan Development Commission is scheduled to consider the request at its April 15 meeting. If approved, the church would be razed for a 24-hour GetGo gas station and convenience store.

In the past several weeks, town officials have met with Indianapolis City-County Councilor Ben Hunter, Giant Eagle and St. John officials.

Subsequently, town officials have toured the structure with an architect.

The public hearing will be conducted at 1 p.m. April 15 at the City-County Building, 200 E. Washington St., Public Assembly Room, second floor.