Monday, February 13, 2023
About this Event
Quality of place is essential when it comes to attracting and retaining residents. The town of Yorktown in Delaware County has made considerable progress in this area in recent years, and it’s continuing on that path with additional READI investments.
East Central Indiana Regional Partnership President and CEO, Trevor Friedeberg, is invested in the region’s success. This area, consisting of Blackford, Delaware, Fayette, Grant, Henry, Jay, Randolph, Rush and Wayne Counties, is centrally located and an ideal location for new businesses and expansions. He views Yorktown as an example of an Indiana community leveraging its strengths and charting its course through what he considers a “deliberative process.&rdquo
“Yorktown is a fantastic community,” he said. “For instance, it has some of the best schools in the state, so it's definitely an area of interest. As Indianapolis continues to grow and spread out from its core, it stands to capture a lot of that continued growth. Leaders have been very deliberate to make sure that they're ready for that growth when it comes through.”
Other factors make Yorktown a hotspot for growth. IN-32, a state highway that stretches the width of Indiana, crosses directly through downtown Yorktown. This road sees more than 5,000 vehicles daily, making downtown businesses and events highly visible to visitors and passers-by.
Freideberg himself has witnessed the hub of activity and believes the further investment will make the community even more attractive to potential residents and business owners. He said currently, several parties are looking to capitalize on that momentum by pursuing another redevelopment initiative.
Town officials, Rebar Development, and project partners recently celebrated the opening of The Oliver, a mixed-use project adjacent to the new Civic Green. An important part of the Town of Yorktown’s Downtown Redevelopment Plan, The Oliver brings housing, retail, office and restaurant space to the area.
Following the warm reception and The Oliver’s initial success, Friedeberg said stakeholders have their sights set on developing land to create another mixed-use project.
Currently, the town owns five of the six parcels that make up the half-square block. READI funds will fund the purchase of the remaining 0.10-acre parcel located at 9315 W. Canal St. The proposed $250,000 in READI funds will cover the purchase price for the site.
According to the economic impact analysis, the redevelopment is expected to generate nearly 200 jobs. Over the next decade, experts say it will contribute approximately $150 million in economic activity to the county.
Though the details are still being hashed out, Freideberg and other regional leaders are bullish on this project.
“They’re still looking at the design phases for (this project),” he said. “They're also looking at making sure that they have the appropriate tenants for those mixed-use buildings, more restaurants, etcetera. I think smaller communities have a high demand for specialty grocery stores and things like that. So they're doing a good job advertising that and making it known.”
Ultimately, Freideberg said this project will be a feather in the community’s proverbial cap. Government leaders expect it to appeal to residents and visitors alike.
“With respect to the retail aspect, they want to make that a destination where people can come, spend a night and hang out,” he said. “I think they're looking at ways to activate the Civic Green, and to make sure that there are different events that are held there, you know, around Christmas time or on the Fourth of July. So that could be a really cool place to kind of bring people in from around the region.”
Reflecting on the significance of The Oliver, he said that the project will no doubt enhance the forthcoming development.
“Putting in these nice new modern apartment buildings is a capacity builder,” he said. “It’ll be very attractive to really all demographics. The younger people like the fact that it's environmentally friendly. You've got everything kind of stacked on top of each other, a low footprint. Still, also some of the older generations also appreciate the fact that they maybe don't have to drive their cars anywhere. They can walk to all the amenities that are offered right there. So it really goes both ways. I think it'll be attractive to a lot of different people and bring in people alike.”