Ambrose Property Group: Waterside

  • Situation

    In late 2017, Ambrose Property Group was selected to redevelop the former GM stamping plant site, more than 100 acres of land in downtown Indianapolis. The project, branded as Waterside, will be a thriving new downtown district including residences, hotels, office and retail space, significant natural and community green space, public art and recreational opportunities along the White River.

    Ambrose engaged Hirons to manage and consult on public relations, media relations, stakeholder engagement and crisis management.

    To achieve maximum exposure and message resonance, Hirons works with Ambrose to plan and execute strategically timed announcements to create positive perception while emphasizing a particular component of the overall message design.

    Hirons keeps Ambrose and Waterside top of mind for community influencers, important media outlets and other target audiences.

  • Strategy

    Hirons first developed a comprehensive strategic communications plan and conducted a detailed market analysis and communications audit. We analyzed the site’s previous news coverage, briefings on other major developments in Indianapolis  and Ambrose’s current communications channels.

    Hirons emphasized a “rolling thunder” strategy, creating a continuous crescendo of news coverage using intentional media spikes to capture more and more of the daily public conversation. Hirons and Ambrose created initial awareness while waiting for the right time to unveil the heart and soul of Indy’s newest urban district.

    Complicating matters, Amazon announced Indianapolis as a top 20 contender for its HQ2 project with the former GM site rumored as a possible landing place. Ambrose was unable to confirm or deny any information related to that process.

    Before the Amazon decision was finalized, Ambrose decided it was time to detail why the company pursued this project and unveil its inspirational plans for redevelopment. On Oct. 12, Ambrose introduced Waterside to Indianapolis.

  • Results

    Leading up to the event, Hirons used a tiered communications approach that began with messaging to the closest internal stakeholders and worked outwardly through target audiences before reaching the general public and media. We developed messaging to educate and inform Ambrose employees and elected officials about Waterside, the project timeline and the future impact on job creation in Indianapolis.

    Building on previous efforts with key reporters and editors, Hirons planned for and coordinated a substantial wave of news coverage – before, during and after the event – to communicate Ambrose’s vision and its desire to redefine urban development in Indianapolis.

    The Indianapolis Business Journal (IBJ) began the surge with a front-page feature in its Oct. 12 print edition. Following a series of positive stories from local television stations that evening, the Indianapolis Star offered its own front-page feature the following Saturday.

    Inside Indiana Business led both its Monday morning and afternoon Inside Edge emails with Waterside pieces, and the IBJ rounded things out with a podcast interview released that Monday featuring Ambrose President Aasif Bade.

    Since early 2018, Hirons has proactively secured nearly 30 positive, development-specific media hits for Ambrose. Audience reach for the earned coverage is 4.1 million and counting.

Digital Rendering of Waterside

Media Coverage

Ambrose Property Group received coverage throughout 2018 and continues to attract attention. Coverage included The Indianapolis Star and Indianapolis Business Journal.

Media Coverage


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