Plan in works to expand industrial park, widen Hillegas Road
By Chris Darby | WANE
Details have been laid out for an expansion of Centennial Industrial Park and widening of Hillegas Road.
Fort Wayne City Council members saw the plan Tuesday night which included size and cost of the project.
“The ability we have is to get these things into there earlier than they would be otherwise and potentially develop the area faster than it would develop without our assistance,” Community Development Administrator Craig Berndt explained.
If the project is approved, the TIF district would include 65 acres west of Hillegas Road, bordered by I-69 on the north. According to the plan, 62 acres of the land is privately owned, the other three acres are public road.
The document presented to council also states “no relocation of residents or businesses has been completed or is required for implementation of this Redevelopment Plan.”
City development officials are tasked with extending utilities to the area, including water and sewer services.
Especially notable in the plan, is the proposal to widen and reconstruction of Hillegas Road, north of State St. and south of Coliseum Blvd. That work could happen in 2022 or 2023. That work is expected to cost around $15 million, 80% of the funds coming from federal sources. The City of Fort Wayne is expected to cover $3 million of the bill.
“We can use the funding that’s available in there, the incremental tax funding to put in city utilities and to fix infrastructure that is already there,” Berndt said.
A spokesperson from City of Fort Wayne’s Community Development department told NewsChannel 15 the goal of the work is to spur development in the northwest corner of the city.
The established portion of Centennial Industrial Park is filled with warehouses and other businesses, including a United States Post Office.
“There are no issues that are potentially negative, adverse to the project,” Berndt added. “We looked at everything.”