Now a vibrant stretch of eclectic urban distinction, Mass Ave could hardly be more different from the urban ruin it was 35 years ago. Riddled with deterioration, crime, and neglect, it took penetrating vision to see what once was—and more importantly, what it could become. The historic flatiron building at New York Street—particularly prominent as the entry point to the Avenue—was visually jarring as it was painted entirely red. The monochromatic stone, brick, windows, etc., was only a superficial woe—the interior rivaled the exterior’s desperate condition.
The 1874 Hammond Block Building was the first project in the Riley Area Revitalization and became the focal point for downtown restoration. It’s restoration in 1979 set the quality standard for all that followed and ushered in the rebirth of Mass Ave. Our greatest challenge was finding someone to take the project. Voluminous work, approvals and deadlines did not overwhelm Henry Price.
The Hammond Block, now on the historic landmark registry, is meeting all the expectations of a modern building well into its second hundred years. (And yes, Henry Price’s offices still reside there.) Receiving the 2013 Indiana AIA (American Institute of Architects) 25 Year Award confirms Hammond Block’s significance and enduring value.
“Great architecture has only two natural enemies: water and stupid men.”