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June 12, 2013

Traffic signal, gateway open the door to TIF development in Sellersburg

(Continued)

SELLERSBURG —

The hope is that the construction of the traffic light and of the new Enterprise Way would spur development in the TIF, and that would eventually connect to Ind. 60.

“I know that there is a fear if you spend this money now, is it a road to nowhere?” Goodman asked rhetorically. “We firmly believe it is not.”

He said access to the entrance and road will provide the first step and a foundation for the TIF district. He added that a major concern of the redevelopment commission was that it would agree to build the road and nothing would happen in terms of development.

But to ease the redevelopment commission’s and the town council’s fears, Goodman pointed to two other redevelopment projects  — off State Street in New Albany and Eastern Boulevard in Clarksville — in which the company has been involved.

Goodman and Muncy said both developments are near capacity and several council members pointed out that neither development project has as desirable a location as Camp Run Commons.

“All of this is right next to the interstate [and] there’s nothing there,” said Town Councilman Terry Langford.

He also asked if the town will have approval for what goes into the site.

“I don’t want 10 years from now to have empty buildings,” Langford said. “Big empty buildings turned into bingo halls [are] just no good for any community.” 

Goodman said the properties would have to fit the town’s zoning ordinances, but the council would not have individual approvals of companies interested locating in the development.

“The most likely users for this particular property are lending institutions, restaurant and retailers because of the proximity to Ivy Tech and because of the proximity to the interstate,” Muncy said. “Unless Ivy Tech goes somewhere in the next 10 years, which I don’t think they’re going to, I doubt if we’re going to have empty buildings,” he added, addressing Langford’s concerns. “Ivy Tech being involved in this project is a huge benefit to us because .... that’s going to drive traffic to that signal.”

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