About 50 local business owners, community leaders and professionals gathered at the Sheraton Riverside Louisville for Jeffersonville’s economic development breakfast Friday morning.
There the attendees were presented with a list of ongoing Jeffersonville projects and an expectation of what those plans will do for the economic growth for the city.
But before the city’s future plans were presented, Economic Development Director Rob Waiz pointed to the impact that businesses expansion has already had on the city. Growth that Waiz cited included 400 jobs that were added at Advanced Metal Technologies, 300 jobs added at Connextions and the estimated 1,200 to 1,600 jobs at Amazon.com Inc.’s new distribution center.
“These are big, significant job openings that have been created,” said Mayor Mike Moore. “They don’t come to a community that’s dying.”
City officials also cited the potential for growth still available at the 6,000-acre River Ridge Commerce Center and said the center is garnering national and international attention from a variety of companies.
Building quality of life
To encourage that future growth and draw more people to Jeffersonville, Moore offered plans for several parks and quality-of-life projects in the works for the city.
“That stuff’s important to me,” he said. “And I think that stuff is important — not only the big companies in town — but to lure families to our city.”
One project is the Falls Landing Park that will serve as a retention lake for rainwater and as a public park for the city at the intersection of 10th and Spring streets. Moore said he expects the project to begin in spring.
Another project in Moore’s plan is to improve and reconstruct the marina along Riverside Drive.
“Our biggest asset in the city of Jeffersonville is the Ohio River,” he said.
Moore added it has been a project that has been talked about over the years, but never acted upon. He said the city plans to construct new boat docks, a new road leading to the docks, as well as walkways, railings and landscaping, which is expected to break ground in 2014.
“It’s not a pie-in-the-sky I hope to do; it’s something I will do,” Moore said.
The third quality-of-life project he offered was eventually constructing a 23-mile biking/hiking trail that will encircle the city.
But the project that may have the most significant impact to the city is already under way.