Airport Seeks 'Optimal Project'

Posted: Updated:

After continued public scrutiny, a proposed $500 million medical research development at the former Indianapolis International Airport site is officially off the table. In a statement, Indianapolis International Airport Authority Board President Kelly Flynn says options for the property are open again and the search will continue for "the optimal project that will provide significant benefits to central Indiana and especially the west side of Indianapolis."

Earlier this week, the board removed a previously-scheduled discussion on the project from the agenda of its Friday meeting. A statement issued by the board said "the Indianapolis Airport Authority has the clear and honorable responsibility to be a good steward to our community. The airport continues to listen to the community’s input and will always put our community first."

The project was pitched by little-known, Indianapolis-based Athlete's Business Network last month. Plans included a global brain health center that would anchor a sports and mixed-use campus. It would've also included a hotel, 20,000-seat sports complex and multiple office buildings. ABN said the development would eventually lead to more than 3,000 jobs, take up around 130 acres and be built in three phases.

The full statement from IAA Board President Kelly Flynn reads:

The Indianapolis Airport Authority (IAA) has a clear responsibility to be a good steward to our community. The airport has been listening to the community’s input and will always put our community first, so the IAA has canceled the request for proposals (RFP) for the 130 acres at the former airport site. We will leave our options open and continue to search for the optimal project that will provide significant benefits to Central Indiana and, especially, the west side of Indianapolis. We will also continue to engage and gather feedback from our stakeholders, including the City of Indianapolis, our neighboring communities and others.

The airport has had success returning non-aviation land to productive use and will continue to make that a priority in order to create jobs for families, put money back on the property tax rolls and boost economic development on the west side that will impact all of Central Indiana. Nearly two years ago, we engaged with elected officials, local communities and organizations to present our new Land Use Initiative designed to return 3,200 acres of land, including the 130 acres at the former airport site. Much of this plan has already been accomplished, including an auction that sold 335 acres, property sale agreements for approximately 100 acres, a Development Agreement for 303 acres, signed documents intended to lead to the sale of 210 acres at one of our smaller airports and 2,100 acres of conservation land.

The airport is an important part of this community, employing 10,000 workers and generating $4.5 billion in economic impact each year.  We remain committed to stimulating even more economic impact by returning airport land to the people we serve.

Flynn, who has been on the board since 2004, was elected president last month. He is senior partner at Flynn & Zinkan Realty Co.

  • Perspectives

    • Creating the Work Spaces that Draw Talent to Indianapolis

      The future economy will be driven by data, powered by robotics and heavily invested in the building blocks of nature – biotech and genetic engineering. That’s true of the economy nationwide, and it’s especially true here in Indianapolis, where dominant pharmaceutical and biotech companies are putting us at the cutting edge of the science-based economy. It all sounds larger than life. But the facilities that will house these industries will always be...



  • Most Popular Stories

    • The Honda Greensburg plant opened in 2008.

      Honda to Invest $4M, Add Jobs at Greensburg Plant

      The American Honda Motor Co. continues to invest in its Greensburg, Indiana plant as it has announced the factory will be producing the company’s first electrified sport utility vehicle in the U.S. The company says it will invest more than $4 million and add 34 new jobs in the plant to support production of the CR-V Hybrid.  

    • (photo courtesy of The Times of Northwest Indiana)

      Valpo Mansion May Fall to Wrecking Ball

      A one-time mansion that once hosted dignitaries and politicians while they visited Valparaiso appears to be facing demolition, following years of decline and disrepair.  The stately mansion, known locally as the Brown home, maybe knocked down and replaced with condominiums, according to our partners at The Times of Northwest Indiana. 

    • NineStar's Expanded Offerings Boost Hancock County

      Greenfield-based NineStar Connect has launched several expansion plans for its water and sewer facilities in Hancock County. The utility says its initiatives have boosted the local economy and attracted businesses and developers to the area. 

    • Socio received the Top-Rated Overall Culture award. (Provided Photo/Socio)

      Inaugural Tech Culture Award Winners Unveiled

      Indianapolis-based Powderkeg has unveiled the winners of the inaugural Indiana Breakout Tech Culture Awards. Eleven Hoosier tech companies received the honors based on survey rankings from the 2019 Tech Census, which focused specifically on tech cultures. Nearly 270 tech companies were nominated and the winners were selected from a group of 50 finalists. More than 1,300 individuals responded to the survey, which allowed employees to rate their companies and employers on...

    • Money magazine judges Fishers as 3rd best place to live in the U.S.

      Fishers Makes Top 10 List of 'Best Places to Live'

      Three communities in Indiana made the top 100 list of best places to live in the country, but only one made the top 10. Fishers was judged by Money magazine as the third best place to live in the United States, behind Clarksville, Tennessee and Round Rock, Texas.