LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) – A Lafayette business is working to restore downtown Lafayette and preserve history found in old homes.
“We are reclaiming downtown Lafayette and it is very important to us to reuse what’s in these houses,” Rider Partners owner Jeff Rider.
Rider is talking about four empty homes on South Eighth Street.
“There’s no historical or architectural integrity left in these buildings at all, so we go into the buildings and reclaim everything out of them that we can reuse to put into our other projects,” Rider said.
Rider Partners owns and manages properties in Lafayette. Most of them are restored buildings with reclaimed wood and fixtures from old homes like four on South Eighth Street dating back more than 100 years.
“You just don’t get the kind of lumber or the kind of wood that you get out of these houses, so by the time we’re ready to tear these houses down they are hardly standing,” Rider said about the process to reclaim wood inside the houses.
Rider said the project on the four homes started when he restored the Lauffer Apartments at the corner of Eighth and South Streets. He bought the four homes to build a new development, but only after he reclaims the majority of materials. He said the short street has a lot of potential for development.
“The changes in elevations, it has a really nice slope to it and when you stand back at the end of the street and look down it really has a lot of potential,” Rider said about Eighth Street.
The process to reclaim and design new housing happens in several phases. Rider said he doesn’t have a set timeline for when we can see new buildings going up, but hopes to have the four homes down by the end of the year. He said whatever is built on the street will fit in with the vibe of downtown.
“Beautiful places to live, a lot of green space, beautiful streets, sidewalks and lighting. Buildings that really fit in with downtown architecture,” Rider said about the potential buildings.
One thing is for sure, they’ll be full of history that can only be found in Lafayette.