BLOOMINGTON – The City of Bloomington’s Redevelopment Commission completed the sale of the Showers Administration Building at 601 N. Morton Street on December 15, 2022.
The purchaser, Eurton Qualified Opportunity Fund, LLC, took possession of the property at closing. The purchase price was $400,000 and included the roughly 18,400 square-foot building and the .19-acre lot immediately to the north of the building.
Designed in 1916, the building contained management offices of the Showers Brothers Furniture Company and an auditorium large enough to accommodate 900 seats on the second floor. The Showers brothers sponsored a number of company events, including professional performances, silent films, and dances. The building was purchased by Indiana University in the 1950s and housed the Indiana University Press until early 2013.
The City of Bloomington Redevelopment Commission assumed ownership of the building in 2011 as part of a larger acquisition of approximately 12 acres of property from Indiana University, which also included the building redeveloped into the Mill, the adjacent Kiln building, and additional lots to the west. These properties became the Certified Technology Park and Trades District. The City has invested more than $150,000 to replace the building’s roof and stabilize exterior brickwork.
To align with the 2013 Certified Technology Park Master Plan, the City has sought a purchaser who would be willing to invest substantially in the historic renovation of the building and provide leasable office space for technology and innovation tenants. After engaging with several prospective investors over the past several years, the City ultimately completed the sale with Eurton last month.
“Restoring and maintaining the former Showers complex into an area for city government, innovation, and trades requires both conservation and collaboration,” said Mayor John Hamilton. “Selling the Showers Administration building to someone committed to the Trades District as well as Bloomington’s past, present, and future satisfies both of those requirements.”
Eurton is actively performing a preliminary restoration of the building’s interior and intends to solicit potential tenants this year. The plan is to restore the building to its former condition with the goal of it looking as it did to Showers employees. Eurton’s team has already opened up the upstairs cathedral ceiling and is currently working on other aspects of the second-floor restoration.
“We were lucky enough to make an offer and have it accepted,” said Eurton president Shawn Eurton. “Now we get to bring the building to its former glory and find a tenant that is the right fit for the space.”
Once renovations are further along, Eurton plans on opening the building for one or more public open houses so that the larger Bloomington community can get a look at what was described when it opened as “the prettiest building in Bloomington.”
Read more about the history of the Showers complex at: https://bton.in/IUWJB.