Community Investment Meeting - Gavin Ferlic Chairman
4/19/18, 5 pm, County-City Building 4th Floor
Present: Gavin Ferlic, Tim Scott, Oliver Davis, Karen White, Regina Williams-Preston, John Voorde, Jo Broden
Absent: Dr. David Varner, Sharon McBride
Eric Horvath, Director of Public Works, says both the study and technical notes will be posted on the City website.
Although the Council asked for the study in advance of this meeting, they did not receive it. It seems the South Bend Tribune may have gotten an advance copy.
Study was done by AECOM, which is based in Chicago and knows our region.
Earl Wacker, Gary Foil and Chris Brewer did the study and presented it. All have decades of experience.
FIVE AREAS WERE STUDIED:
1. New Chocolate Factory development
2. Honeywell area
3. Amtrak location
4. Downtown - not all the way to Union Station, but would use South Street for the tracks
5. Realignment at the Airport
Currently the trip between Chicago and South Bend is rated at 115 minutes
Future Estimated Times are:
82 Minutes - Chocolate Factory
82 Minutes - Honeywell
82 Minutes - Amtrak
84 Minutes - Downtown
84 Minutes - Realigned Airport
Surprisingly, very little difference
Estimated for the year 2040
698 Chocolate Factory
727 Realigned Airport
Again, very little difference
A tool called STOPS was used to make these estimates. It's used by the Federal Government and accounts for ridership, travel times and full schedules.
Also taken into account was ridership for ND Games, slower growth in our area, retail space is declining due to online shopping, office space is decreasing from 250 SF to 150 SF
Calculated at 2017 dollar values, but may need to consider interest could rise to 4%
$44.3M Chocolate Factory
$23.9M Honeywell - Honeywell is the 5th largest industrial plat in SB
$29.5M Realigned Airport
OPERATION & MAINTENANCE COSTS:
$247,430 Chocolate Factory
$247,430 Airport (Because parking and security is already in place)
These were based on potential development and support of:
Residential, Industrial, Retail, Office and Stormwater
These were based on looking at the quarter to half mile radius around each location.
One of the main concerns for downtown is where stormwater would go. They noted there isn't enough open space for water absorption.
Development in the Airport area will be limited due to height of buildings and types of trees to accomodate air traffic restrictions.
Chocolate factory will be requiring a sewer extension and is hilly, making it harder for a train.
According to Federal standards, SB has about 500 acres of land available for industrial development.
Walking to the train was also considered since most people only want to walk .25 to .50 mile to a train station.
Honeywell site will need to address a conflict with frieght train lines and crossing those safely.
Horn blowing issues would need to be addressed with SSM/ASM silent crossing requirements.
Promotion for South Bend would include selling people "second homes" who reside in Chicago.
Mike Nolan noted the train station at the Airport was supposed to be "temporary" and it has been there since 1992.
EXPANDED ECONOMIC IMPACT:
10 year outlook
$15.4M Chocolate Factory
$19.4M Honeywell Mixed Use
$8.8M Proposed Airport
$7.2M Current Airport
COMMENTS FROM MAYOR: (paraphrased)
1. Noted there is not much variance in time calculations
2. The re-routing at the Airport is more expensive and gives less economic development
3. Downtown would give the highest reward, but would also cost the most, so funding would be an issue at over $100M
4. Honeywell option can be done for much less as a "Skinny Option"
5. Speed to complete the project is also a consideration and he would like to see it completed by 2020
Council had requested the report in advance so they could review it and ask better questions, but did not get advance access. They stated they will have more questions once they have reviewed it and plan to hold additional public meetings on it.
CITIZEN COMMENTS: (Only 2 Minutes per person was allowed and only 5 people were allowed to comment per Tim Scott, Council President)
NOTE: All comments are paraphrased
* Richard Collins - Head of the Ardmore Neighborhood initiative, thanked the Council and Mayor for considering alternatives to spare the Ardmore Neighborhood
* If developed at Honeywell, he hopes adding retail and other development would lower crime. Also concerned about well water safety.
* Hopes this will permanently take going through Ardmore off the table as an option since other options look better
* Kevin Smith, Developer of the Rennaisance District since 1979, says he hopes his develpment will add 3K tech jobs to the area and would like it to go to the downtown so it can draw in tech workers who stay here 4 days of the week and 3 days in Chicago. Also cited we have an Internet "Carrier Hotel" in place.
* Expressed concern that as long as we remain on Eastern Time and Chicago is on Central Time, the hour time difference will make it hard for people to adjust sleep schedules when working and living in two different time zones.
MICHIANA OBSERVER COMMENTS:
* Didn't hear any references to "Quality of Life" mentioned
* Spoke to the study presenters to encourage thoughtful planning for those with disabilities that need to travel by train to get to treatments in Chicago
* Needs to be a valuable lesson to both the Mayor and Community Development to listen to the Citizens and not just execute plans they like. Crowd sourcing with Citizens is valuable and brings in a variety of needed perspectives.
For more articles and meetings, #MichianaObserver #CitizenMedia
Citizens attending community events to inform other Citizens.