The Northeast Indiana Regional Development Authority has recommended the Grow Wells County project receive Indiana Regional Cities Initiative support. Funding was initially requested in January for the creation of an outdoor plaza in downtown Bluffton and a pavilion/amphitheater in Ossian.
The Regional Cities Initiative was created to provide funding for quality of place projects meant to spur talent attraction and retention in regions throughout Indiana. A recent project was the Friedman Park Event Center, which received funding earlier this month.
Both projects will be on the regional Poka-Bache Trail, connecting Northeast Indiana from Steuben County to Wells County.
The Northeast Indiana Regional Development Authority board voted to fund $423,183 for the project, which is 20 percent of the $2.1 million of the project’s total cost.
“Recommending funding for projects in all 11 counties in Northeast Indiana is a huge accomplishment for the RDA board and the region. The spirit of regionalism is truly alive here in Northeast Indiana, and the Grow Wells County project and the leveraged funds allocated by the RDA are great examples of what we can do when we work together to grow the region’s economy and population,” said Brad Bishop, president of the Northeast Indiana RDA board and executive director at OrthoWorx, in a news release.
The next step in the funding process will be to go to the Indiana Economic Development Corporation. The IEDC will review the funding application submitted by the Northeast Indiana RDA on behalf of Grow Wells County.
If approved by the IEDC, this Wells County project will be the final county in the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership’s 11 counties to be awarded Regional Cities Initiative funding.
By Ryan Collier Director of Investment Management, Bedel Financial Consulting Inc.
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