State and local officials will hold a groundbreaking Wednesday for the first phase of a heavy haul corridor connecting two of southeast Indiana’s biggest economic engines. The more than $30 million project will be a boost for manufacturing and logistics businesses located at River Ridge Commerce Center and the Port of Indiana-Jeffersonville.
The Indiana Economic Development Corp. says the road will provide a competitive advantage to existing Hoosier companies and those looking to locate to the region. The roadway will improve access to multiple Class I railroads, which the state says will be particularly beneficial to automotive and steel manufacturers.
The state will kick in around a third of the full price of the project with major contributions from the federal government and River Ridge Commerce Center, and funding from the city of Jeffersonville Redevelopment Commission, the Port of Indiana-Jeffersonville, Clark County and the Kentuckiana Regional Planning and Redevelopment Agency.
Governor Mike Pence’s scheduled appearance at Wednesday’s 11:15 a.m. groundbreaking ceremony follows another high-profile announcement in the area. Monday, Senator Joe Donnelly and representatives from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers joined River Ridge executives to announce the Army was transferring approximately 830 acres of River Ridge land to the industrial park’s development authority. With that, and a nearly 290 acres set to be transferred next year, the authority will be in control of some 6,000 acres.
The Ports of Indiana-Jeffersonville posted a record 2014 and started this year by notching the highest quarterly shipment totals in its 30-year history in the first quarter of this year.