If School House Rock had created a series of songs about architecture in addition to numbers, science and America, there would have surely been one about symmetry in design. It’s been said that beauty is based on or characterized by the excellent proportion offered by symmetery. Except… as noted above, the bays are equally divided, as the second floor windows appear to be, but let’s face it: The devil is in the details.

With the various materials, doings, undoings and all, you have to wonder: WTH did this originally look like?

Location: West Michigan Street

5 responses to “WTH Wednesday: Suffering Symmetry”

  1. basil bercehaks jr says:

    Unfortunately there are many stores and houses/buildings in former thriving neighborhood commercial areas around Indianapolis that look like this…

  2. Norm Morford says:

    There are so many buildings, both those which were residential or those which were commercial or industrial, one wonders if we ought to have a list of those which ought to be torn down first.

    Might we establish a list of some of the worst offenders, based no only on appearance, degree to which no one has done any repairs, and the length of years it has stood looking like a blight on the landscape. Then allow people to cast votes for those they most want to see gone.

    If we can not pressure the city to tear many of them down, how about adding a tax surcharge that any current owner must pay? In other words, fix it or tear it down or pay the consequences in helping the city-county budget.

  3. Tiffany Benedict Berkson says:

    Norm, the city does have a list and I for one, am not a fan of just knocking things down as a perceived solution. I do, however, wholeheartedly agree that people who own properties for years without maintaining them should be assessed additional fees. If speculators acquire troubled properties and do not properly rehabilitate them in a timely manner, I don’t think that behavior should be rewarded by low taxes and such. They should pay more, as their actions are a bigger burden on the city. My two cents.

  4. David Brewer says:

    Ah… old Haughville. At one time, this was the Louis Wanner saloon. There is a ghost sign on the alley side that says so, along with an ad for Jung’s Red Heart Beer (“Jung’s Red Heart Beer sustains life”). I recall that the upper story collapsed around 20 years ago, hence the remodeling.

    The Link Belt and National Malleable works stood just down the street (until about 1958) so I’m sure this bar was really hopping on payday.

    The building that you barely see at the left of the photo was at one time the Daisy movie theater. It was originally called the Princess pre-WWI. From the looks of it, it got an Art Deco remodeling during the 1930s. A friend of mine’s mother told me she was an usherette there in 1941.

    Quite an interesting neighborhood.

  5. David Brewer says:

    I was just digging through some things and came up with a photo of the building from February-March of 1984 with the upper story still intact. There were five windows centered above the first floor entrances. The one in the middle was a bricked in or blind window which I imagine was where the stairwell to the second floor was. The photo isn’t the greatest. It’s actually a view looking west on Michigan Street. But you see enough of the building to get those details. Also I must apologize. In looking at the photo, I see that the Daisy theater is actually two doors west of the Wanner building. The one you see part of was another old storefront.