New owner starts plan to turn around troubled neighborhood

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There's new hope for a neighborhood riddled with crime.

One of the city's most notorious apartment complexes will soon have a new owner with a new mission. The Meadows Foundation, a community foundation that helped bring the Y to the neighborhood, has secured a federal loan to buy the troubled Keystone North Apartments - formerly known as the Phoenix Apartments - with plans to turn them around.

"We have a lot of senior citizens, like me, who are now afraid to go out, especially through the Meadows. It's just not safe to travel," said Jessie Cushenberry of Indianapolis.

So Cushenberry is glad to see the Meadows Community Foundation buy the complex, fix it up and work on getting rid of of the criminal element.

"The main purpose of taking over the Phoenix is to revitalize the whole area, and you can't do that and still leave an eyesore," said Vickie Driver.

In fact, the foundation ultimately plans to build a new housing complex on the site of the old Timber Ridge apartments, moving Phoenix residents there.

"Upgrading would be nice for some hard-working people really trying to change their lives and do something different," said Twanna Holmes.

Tackling the Phoenix is one of the last steps to turn around the Meadows area. It follows the addition of two charter schools, a new YMCA and health center as well as new apartments along 38th Street.

The one thing still missing? Retail - specifically a grocery store. But just like a garden, Driver and Cushenberry say it takes time, though changes at the Phoenix should help a lot.

The loan to buy the property still needs City-County Council approval, which is expected in August.