Granson Jewelers.jpg

Granson Jewelers at 202 N. Main St. is shown in this 2018 file photo. The Kokomo Redevelopment Commission approved a $200,000 forgivable loan to help turn the building into commercial space, condos and an event space.

The Kokomo Redevelopment Commission approved a $200,000 forgivable loan to help turn a prominent downtown building into commercial space, condos and an event space.

The board last week approved the loan to BC Investment Properties LLC to aid in the redevelopment of the old Granson Jewelers building, located at 202 N. Main St. on the courthouse square.

According to the application, the building will house three commercial spaces on the first floor, condos on the second floor and event space on the third floor. The investment totals just under $1 million, including the forgivable loan, according to the loan application.

BC Investment Properties LLC is registered to Isiah Baker, according to the LLC’s business filing. Baker is also the owner of Baker Contracting, which will be doing the work inside the property.

“I love downtown,” Baker told the Tribune in a brief interview this week. “We’ve done a lot of projects downtown. ... We’re excited to get some more businesses downtown, some more life downtown and continue to make it look better.”

LeaderOne Financial’s Kokomo branch, which is currently housed in the building, will remain and be one of the three first-floor commercial spaces, Baker said.

The new development will make use of a building that’s largely sat empty since Granson Jewelers closed in 2018.

Since 1948, there’s been a jewelry store on the corner of Main and Walnut streets in downtown Kokomo. Dave Granson had owned and operated the store since 1971, which was previously named Engel Jewelers, before he chose to retire.

Given its prominence on the square and its history, members of the Redevelopment Commission were happy to see it will be getting a new life.

“That’s improving the uptown, that’s for sure,” Mike Wyant, redevelopment commission board member, said about the project.

Tyler Juranovich can be reached at 765-454-8577, by email at tyler.juranovich@kokomotribune.com or on Twitter at @tylerjuranovich.

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