JEFFERSONVILLE (May 28, 2020) – During a special meeting Wednesday, the River Ridge Development Authority approved two measures that will support ongoing development and job creation at River Ridge Commerce Center. Both measures were approved unanimously by the RRDA board of directors.
In the first resolution, the board approved a contract with Jacobi, Toombs & Lanz, Inc. to prepare preliminary design documents for additional sanitary sewer improvements for the northern area of the River Ridge Commerce Center. This initial phase is a necessary step in partnership with the city of Charlestown to insure adequate wastewater treatment capacity for the future growth in Charlestown and River Ridge.
The total contract amount for the preliminary design services is $575,000. Through an agreement with Charlestown, the city will reimburse 25 percent of the costs for design and construction.
“The approval of this contract symbolizes the strength of the city’s partnership with RRDA and confirms that Charlestown is an integral part of the region’s development,” said Charlestown Mayor Treva Hodges. “I’m thrilled to have RRDA’s support for this much needed infrastructure repair and look forward to an exciting future of growth and development on the north end of the commerce center.”
Including this contract, River Ridge has invested approximately $25 million in the Charlestown section of the commerce center, positioning it for continued growth. Recent developments have included clearing, demolition of old structures, and development of new roads and utility infrastructure. To date, companies such as J. Knipper and Company, Magnolia Automotive and D.A. Inc. have invested in new facilities here in recent years, with approximately 1,500 acres remaining to be developed.
“We’ve recently had some serious inquiries from companies interested in adding jobs here, and we need to continue our investments in our infrastructure to support them,” said River Ridge executive director Jerry Acy. “The planned sanitary sewer improvements will pay dividends immediately and long into the future. It’s much-needed for River Ridge and the city of Charlestown.”
Learning Center agreement approved
In the second resolution, the RRDA board voted to approve a rent-free lease of nearly 25 acres with the developer of a proposed learning center and training facility. The 25 acres is part of a 53-acre parcel located between River Ridge Parkway and Logistics Avenue. The land is an undeveloped portion of River Ridge with no existing buildings.
Officials with Southern Indiana firm, America Place, one of the largest developers at River Ridge, had recently announced plans to create these important resources for the Southern Indiana community.
“We are very pleased to work with River Ridge to enhance the quality of life for the people in Southern Indiana and look forward to beginning the first phase of the Learning Center,” said Jim Karp, CEO of America Place. Effective early childhood development has proven to provide positive outcome of increased social skills, better academic performance, enthusiasm for learning and projected higher lifetime earnings.
“Recruiting and retaining employers and jobs at River Ridge is our No. 1 priority,” Acy said. “This would greatly enhance the park and support the companies located here. Our board supports this proposed concept and looks forward to working with this developer to make the project a reality.”
River Ridge is currently home to more than 60 businesses employing more than 10,000 workers. The center generates an estimated $2.3 billion in annual economic impact.