Downtown Projects

An image of Hotel Ray, which stood in the Northwest Corner of the Public Square (roughly where Brammer and Yeend is located now) from the 1850's until 1959Source: Shelby County Historical Society

Reinvesting In The "Heart" Of Our Community

In 1823, Shelbyville was first platted, and at its center was a Public Square. Both then and now, the Public Square has always served as the center of local commerce, business activity, community engagement, and historic significance. To keep this asset alive, we must help write the next chapter for Downtown Shelbyville.

A community's downtown is home to its highest concentration of locally owned businesses, so investments made in that area have the greatest positive impact for the entire community's economy. The investments in downtown that are described on this website will allow our local business to grow exponentially, and will serve as a catalyst for future entrepreneurial investments in downtown.

Evolution of Downtown Over The Years

Over the generations since the community's inception, the public square has evolved with the community. In its original configuration, the center of the public square was home to the first county courthouse. Over the years, the traffic configuration within the public square has changed, to allow room for the Inter-Urban, connecting residents to Indianapolis. Later the iconic Joseph Fountain was added to the center of the Public Square, and still stands at that location today. After the prominence of the personal automobile increased, the space was transformed once again to a configuration similar to what we know today, with vehicles moving around the outside of the square and parking located in the center.

Throughout the years, as the community has changed and grown, the public square and the downtown as a whole have changed with it, always serving as the "heart" of our community. This project is the next iteration of the public square, and the next chapter of Downtown Shelbyville.

A photo showing the Public Square after the Interurban had been installed, but prior to the Joseph Fountain being installed in the center of the square. This photograph was taken is looking south down Harrison Street.Source: Shelby County Historical Society
Sons of Veterans Parade, June 8, 1899 Source: Shelby County Historical Society
A crowd gathers in the northeast corner of the Public Square for a community event in the Fall of 1908. Source: Shelby County Historical Society
First National Bank c. late 1930s or early 1940s Source: Shelby County Historical Society
J.G. Deprez Hardware in the Early 1980'sSource: Shelby County Historical Society

The Next Chapter for Downtown Shelbyville

As the Shelbyville community continues to grow and change, our downtown must be a key component of that process. While numerous privately-funded projects are in the pipeline, these three projects show the long-term commitment from the public sector. Clicking on any of the three images below will direct you to a page that highlights each of these three projects and provides more details. Towards the bottom of this page, you will also find a map laying out the locations of these three projects.

A complete redevelopment of the sidewalks, streets, and parking areas within the Public Square.

An architecturally aware residential infill project on the former Major Hospital property

A Public Parking Garage to serve the current and future downtown businesses