Goshen Department of Community Development gives update on 24 redevelopment projects

    Community Development Director Mark Brinson gave the Goshen city council an update on each of the city’s ongoing redevelopment projects. 

    (J. Tyler Klassen / The Elkhart Truth)
    Posted on July 31, 2014 at 8:43 a.m.

    GOSHEN — From environmental cleanup to the construction of new neighborhoods, ongoing redevelopment projects at different stages can be found throughout various parts of Goshen. 

    Mark Brinson, Community Development director, gave an update on 24 redevelopment projects during the city council retreat meeting Tuesday, July 29

    Here are the highlights of the report:

    • Goshen Theater: Goshen Theater Inc. has acquired Goshen Theater on Main Street and is looking to renovate it. Goshen Theater Inc. has received a 501 (c)(3) designation, meaning donors will be able to make tax-deductible donations for the renovation project. The city has committed $50,000 and the Convention and Visitors Bureau has committed $25,000 to support interim operations. Funding will allow the theater to be open to the public during the fundraising campaign.
    • River Race Drive: Work on the two-way street between Douglas and Jefferson streets started in June, with C&E Excavating removing soil to allow Frontier and NIPSCO to bury utility lines. Three houses that have to be razed have been disconnected from utilities and are ready for demolition. C&E Excavating will start with construction of the water main, sanitary sewer and storm sewer along Purl Street, River Race Drive and South Second Street.
    • Northwest Bike Trail: Routing for a trail that will connect the northwest Goshen neighborhoods to the U.S. 33 shopping district is still in the works. Right now, the plan is for the trail to go west along Bashor Road from U.S. 33 to C.R. 17 and then South to the Sam’s Club Parking lot. The project is still in planning stages.
    • Millrace Townhomes and flats: The redevelopment commission approved the development of 25 townhomes and flats along the Millrace between Purl and Madison streets. The plan commission and city council approved the rezoning process in April and May. The site plan will need to be submitted for the Plan Commission’s review and approval.
    • Millrace Neighborhood development: Millrace Neighborhood Inc. is planning to develop 12 single family homes, featuring a common area that encourages interaction between the residents. The plan commission and city council approved the rezoning process in May and July meetings. Now the site plan will need to be submitted for the Plan Commission’s review and approval.
    • Hawks Building: Hawks 1886 LLC proposed to build a boutique hotel and a brewpub on the north side of the Hawks Building. The developer is waiting for a market study to be completed as a pre-requisite for bank financing. If all goes according to plan, construction could start in 2014, with completion in the spring of 2015. 
    • Downtown Vault Closure Program: A total of 24 underground vaults under sidewalks in downtown Goshen were found to be in need of repair. So far, closures have been funded for 109 S. Main St., 106 N. Main St., 227 S. Main St., 110 E. Lincoln Ave., 101 S. Main St., 115 1/2 S. Main St., 218 N. Main St., 122 S. Main St., 120 S. Main St., and 108 and 110 E. Washington St.
    • Norfolk Southern Marion Branch Railroad Curve Realignment: As part of the U.S. relocation project, an option is to realign the railroad curvature at Ninth Street to allow trains to continue through the city at 20 mph instead of 10 mph at the curve. INDOT, Norfolk Southern Railroad and the city have agreed to complete the railroad realignment in 2015, before the U.S. 33 construction project, which is scheduled to start in 2016. The city is working with representatives of Norfolk Southern to discuss funding, design and construction. 
    • Ninth Street Bike Trail: The city is expecting to receive federal funding for the project,— about 80 percent of the funding will be from federal funds. A request for proposal for preliminary engineering will be submitted to advertise on INDOT’s website in the next few weeks, according to the report. 
    • Improvements on Kercher: There are several plans aimed at improving Kercher Road, starting with improvements to the intersection of U.S. 33 and Kercher Road this year. Improvements to the intersection of Kercher Road and S.R. 15 are expected to happen in 2015. Plans to improve Kercher Road from the railroad tracks to Diedorff Road must be approved before the city receives federal funding for the project. A project to develop a storm water retention area on the north side of Kercher Road, just east of the railroad tracks has been put on hold until further discussions with the county.
    • Horn Ditch Project: Construction to widen the banks along the Horn Ditch, between C.R. 31 and College Avenue to retain flood water is expected to be “substantially completed” in November, with some work to be finished in the spring of 2015, according to the report. 
    • Former Western Rubber Site: Genesis Products submitted a proposal to the redevelopment commission in May to develop the old Western Rubber site. The company is now working on construction plans.

    Follow Elkhart Truth reporter Sharon Hernandez on Twitter at @Sharon_HT

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