Over $6 million approved to invest in preschool, civic center, housing, and mixed-use downtown developments in Northeast Indiana

FORT WAYNE, Ind., Dec. 7, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — The Northeast Indiana Regional Development Authority (RDA) has approved support for regional efforts dedicated to essential housing, community development, downtown revitalization, and preschool education. The RDA’s investment exceeds $6 million and will leverage approximately $45,000,000 in additional state, public, and private support.

Through READI, 17 regions across the state that represent all 92 counties are moving forward with projects and programs designed to enhance Indiana’s regions for current and future generations of Hoosiers. Collectively, the state’s $500 million investment is expected to yield an additional $9.86 billion public, private, and nonprofit dollars invested (19.72:1 investment leverage ratio) in enhancing Indiana’s quality of life, quality of place, and quality of opportunity.

“Northeast Indiana remains one of the most collaborative regions in the state, but what makes it so special is the communities that comprise it. This round of investments supports growth infrastructure and addresses key needs in a number of those communities to help advance our region’s positive momentum,” said Jeff Turner, board president of the RDA.

The projects, approved in Wells, Whitley, Kosciusko, and Huntington counties, are:

  • $59,400 for Southern Wells Community Schools Preschool, a physical infrastructure project to build an early learning center in the high school in fall of 2023. The project will require an additional teacher and aide, furniture for children, technology for an additional classroom, playground area at the high school, and safety measures installed for both the high school and preschoolers.
  • $500,000 for the Churubusco Civic Center, a construction project that will convert a vacant PNC Bank Building at the heart of downtown Churubusco into a civic center. The building will house the Churubusco Public Library, an after-school program for at-risk youth, and a meeting room/classroom that will be utilized by Churubusco Chamber of Commerce, Small Business Administration, and Smith-Green Community Schools for entrepreneurship adult education opportunities.
  • $1,250,000 for the Gatke Warehouse & Lofts, a mixed-use development that will add nearly 27,000 square feet of office and retail space, entrepreneurship and research space, and more than 70 apartments in downtown Warsaw.
  • $3,000,000 for Ossian North Development, a workforce attainable housing project that includes 113 single family homes and 48 single family villa homes. Additionally, there will be new infrastructure including a lift station and increased size of water and sewer lines, which will allow for sustainable growth of the community at a lower cost for future development.
  • $2,700,000 for Little River Lofts, a downtown mixed-use development of 49,500 square feet, including the Annex building and Opera Block and 40+ downtown housing units with retail and commercial spaces. The facilities are designed to create a western anchor complementing the RCI-funded UB Block’s eastern edge.

This new batch of READI funds comes just days after the RDA approved over $15 million for five other catalytic projects for the region. These newly announced projects will continue to drive economic success in Northeast Indiana as the state focuses on housing, infrastructure, and building communities for Hoosiers.

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