Army Deeds Large Parcel to River Ridge

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Pictured left to right: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Louisville District Commander Col. Christopher Beck, Senator Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.), River Ridge Commerce Center Board President Mark Robinson, River Ridge Authority Executive Director Jerry Acy Pictured left to right: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Louisville District Commander Col. Christopher Beck, Senator Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.), River Ridge Commerce Center Board President Mark Robinson, River Ridge Authority Executive Director Jerry Acy

The U.S. Army has transferred around 830 acres of land to the control of the River Ridge Commerce Center. Officials say a long-standing dispute between the Army and the center over control of the property will end next year when a remaining 285 acres will be passed on to River Ridge.

At that point, the total amount transferred will amount to around 6,000 acres. Donnelly calls River Ridge an "economic driver" for the state. Indeed, the property has drawn several major developments in recent years, including an fulfillment hub.

River Ridge Development Authority Executive Director Jerry Acy says this additional land will only increase prospects for the industrial site, which used to be home to major military ammunition production operations. "The RRDA has already achieved significant success in locating major companies to our Commerce Center resulting in over 7,000 new jobs and generating over $1.3 billion in total economic impact for the State of Indiana. The current 830 acres will greatly enhance our marketing efforts since almost 80% of those acres are located between State Road 62 and the new Interstate 265 interchange scheduled to open by October 2016. We expect to continue attracting new corporate investments and many thousand more new jobs to southeastern Indiana in the years to come."

The property just deeded to River Ridge includes a landfill and will allow additional potential development to move forward on what officials call "high-value areas," which could bring more even jobs.

Donnelly's office says the senator and his staff have been working with the River Ridge authority for more than a year after re-kindling negotiations a year ago to transfer the land. The negotiations have involved representatives from the Army, River Ridge, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Indiana Department of Environmental Management.

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