- Associated Press - Sunday, November 8, 2015

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (AP) - Many local leaders are feeling that downtown is the place to be in Terre Haute, as evidenced by new construction, renovations and preservation projects that are attracting people and businesses to the historic district.

The board of the Wabash Valley Community Foundation shares that feeling. The board not only recognizes the revitalization of the downtown area, but has decided to move the foundation’s headquarters back into the downtown flow with the purchase and renovation of a 1950s office building.

“For us, it is really going to be a good move,” said Beth Tevlin, executive director of the community foundation. The site, most recently home of construction firm CDI Inc., is just two blocks south of Wabash Avenue. “We are really excited to be moving back downtown.”

To show off the new location, a pre-renovation open house is planned.

Little of the space there now will remain the same, Tevlin said. A meeting room in the center of the building will be expanded into a large conference room with theater seating for 77 people, or training space for up to 40 people. The move is to be made in May 2016.

“This will be an alternative community meeting site,” board president Fred Nation told the Tribune-Star during a recent cleanup session inside the building.

During a walk-through of the building, Tevlin and Nation pointed out locations of new offices, new restrooms, kitchen, work rooms, a records room for the 530 separate funds and files on grants and scholarships, as well as a coat room and the lobby/greeting area.

Tevlin the foundation board doesn’t yet have bids for the renovation work. But she hopes that the work will be completed in time for the May move in because the lease for the current office space is up May 31.

The foundation’s current location is in the Corporate Square building on Ohio Boulevard.

“The rental space at Corporate Square has been fabulous,” Tevlin said. “When we moved out there we originally had three employees. Now we have seven employees, and three interns, and a work-study student from Rose-Hulman and an Indiana State University student intern. We got to the point where we were bumping into each other.”

The foundation board purchased the new site after doing a cost analysis of renting versus buying the building. The purchase and move makes sense based on the expansion needs and the long-term rental costs at the current location, Tevlin said.

“We hope to move mostly in April,” Tevlin said, noting that February and March will be busy with a new grant cycle, scholarship awards and the wrap up of the matching funds campaign for a Lilly Foundation Endowment grant.

The foundation board has been thinking about the move for more than a year, Tevlin said, and members have visited foundation offices in other communities to see where they are located and the type of facilities available.

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Source: (Terre Haute) Tribune-Star, http://bit.ly/1QdMi7x

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Information from: Tribune-Star, http://www.tribstar.com

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