New England News
6:21 pm
Tue January 8, 2013

Redevelopment Plans Announced For Historic Indian Motorcycle Site

American International College Tuesday announced a $25 million dollar redevelopment of the historic Indian Motorcycle property adjacent to its campus in Springfield Massachusetts.  WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports.

The Mason Square Fire Station with the Indian Motorcycle complex in the background
Credit WAMC

The project announced Tuesday will result in the redevelopment of 139 housing units in the former factory complex where legendary Indian Motorcycles were manufactured up until 1950.  It will include building apartments in  a former fire station that sits on the property in the heart of the inner city Mason Square Neighborhood.

AIC President Vince Maniaci said the project is part of AIC’s continued commitment to the surrounding community.

AIC took over long stalled efforts to develop the former Indian Motorcycle  complex and the vacant Mason Square Fire Station almost three years ago, but was unable to advance plans for a commercial development that included a cyber café in the old fire house.

The college has now partnered with First Resource Development Company of Norwell Massachusetts. CEO Gordon  Pulsifer said housing at the site will work both historically and financially.

Half the housing will be market rate, the rest for low income tenents. Pulsifer said construction is not expected to start for  18 months because of the time required to securing financing and permits.

The former Indian Motorcycle factory building dates back to 1890. The former Mason Square Fire Station was built in 1910.

Springfield’s Chief Development Officer Kevin Kennedy said the project will be a major step in the redevelopment of the State Street corridor, the city’s main east-west artery.

Millions in public money has been spent to improve the infrastructure along State Street in a bid to spur private investment.  Congressman Richard Neal, who secured much of that public funding, said he looked forward to the Indian Motorcycle properties being restored and revitalized.

First Resource Development Company has a track record in Springfield. The company, last Spring completed a $25 million dollar housing development called Worthington Commons and is working on a $75 million project in the South End , which was damaged by the June 2011 tornado