NEW ALBANY — It may be much smaller in scope, but officials hope the proposed Innovation Park near Georgetown provides an economic boost to Floyd County like River Ridge has had on Clark County.

But it will look much different.

There will be no industrial type businesses in the park. It will be strictly a technology campus which will draw companies with high paying jobs to the county.

On Monday, the Floyd County Plan Commission unanimously approved a zoning map amendment change to rezone the 61 acres, at 6621 State Road 64 in Georgetown Township from Rural Residential to Office Business.

The county owned 20 acres of the property and last year secured 40 acres adjacent to its property in order for the technology park to move forward. Of the 60 acres, 48 will be developed. Two barns and a house on the property will be reused.

Work will include building an overpass over the railroad crossing and realign a section of Oaks Road. Trees and Interstate 64 will buffer the park from other property owners.

Don Lopp, director of operations for Floyd County, said an anchor tenant is already in place but did not reveal the name. He also said work is expected to begin on the park this year.

VILLAGES OF VALLEY VIEW

While the Floyd County Commissioners denied a rezoning request earlier this month, the Villages of Valley View development is moving forward with a new design.

The developers of the project, located in the 3000 block of Lawrence Banet Road on 13 acres of land, asked the commissioners to rezone the property from Residential Suburban to Residential Urban in order to create a 55 lot subdivision. That was denied, so the developer has decided to build 33 lots which falls within guidelines of a Residential Suburban designation. While plans will still have to get plan commission approval, the property will not have to be rezoned and should move forward.

Since the plat has been modified, the plan commission will have to hold a special meeting at 5 p.m. June 27 for public comment and initial approval. That would allow for secondary approval to be granted next month.

Attorney John Kraft, representing the developers, was hoping for a public hearing and initial approval Monday in order for the development to move forward and not have to wait until August for a secondary approval. With a special meeting scheduled later this month, there will be no delay.

As plan commission members prepared to table the request before scheduling a special meeting, Kraft told them that Floyd County was the "hardest" county to deal with to get developments approved.

"The inability to get something approved in Floyd County is unbelievable," he said. "This is a matter of right, it's in a RS district."

Member Vic Unruh wanted to move forward with the request and said he did not want Floyd County to be known as unfriendly to developers.

"The last thing I want to do is turn down a by-right subdivision," he said.

DANNY'S FARM

Secondary approval was given to Danny's Farm, a development by Cristiani Family Partnership, LLC, located at 6225 U.S. 150 in Greenville Township. The development will sit on 14 acres and include 20 lots. Danny's Farm received initial approval in October 2017.

Chris Morris is an assistant editor at the News and Tribune. Contact him via email at chris.morris@newsandtribune.com. Follow him on Twitter: @NAT_ChrisM.

I am an assistant editor, cover Floyd County news and enjoy writing feature stories on interesting people in Southern Indiana.