Interchange development interest continues

February 16th, 2017

By Jennifer Decker | KPC News - The Herald Republican

Interest from a variety of sources has come with development a 40-acre parcel at the Interstate 69 and U.S. 20 interchange.

A certified technology park is also proposed at the site, which is on the southeast side of the interchange.

Angola Plan Director Vivian Likes will give the Angola Redevelopment Commission a strategic plan review of the interchange at Thursday’s meeting. The meeting begins at 5 p.m. at City Hall, 210 N. Public Square.

“We have a wide variety of interest: restaurants, hotels, industry for the certified technology park,” she said.

Progress at the site is moving slowly, Angola Mayor Dick Hickman said, adding that happens with large projects.

“The thing that stands out is how long it takes. There’s a lot of meetings,” Angola Mayor Dick Hickman.

It’s worth it, he said, when such projects come to fruition.

First, the site needs sewer, water and roads infrastructuer. That will be paid for with a $1 million Community Crossings grant the city secured from the Indiana Department of Transportation in August.

The matching grant provides for improvements to roads and bridges.

The city’s match of the $1 million will come from Major Moves funding. That came from leasing of the Indiana Toll Road in 2006 with funding earmarked for infrastructure, roads and economic development.

The park is being developed by a group called Angola First that’s made up of Jim Ingledue, Wayne Klink, Vince Hansen and Ken Wilson.

“We’re moving ahead with an access road,” Likes said. “Hopefully, when it’s complete, we’ll have more businesses checking.”

Roads will be added or altered, namely, to avoid the potential danger in having motorists make left-hand turns onto U.S. 20. The road inside the development will be extended to South C.R. 390W. Shoup Street will be reconstructed and connected to a new access road.

City officials and developers are hoping getting the technology park will be a draw.

The state’s certified technology parks program was created to support growth of high-technology business, says the Indiana Economic Devlopment Corporation website. The certification allows for local recapture of certain state and local tax revenue that can be invested in the developing park.

Presently, the state has 24 certified technology parks. The closest is in Fort Wayne at the Northeast Indiana Innovation Center.

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