Planners recommend approval of Lilly manufacturing site in Boone County
The Lebanon Plan Commission voted unanimously Monday to recommend approval of Eli Lilly and Co.’s development plan for two manufacturing facilities in Boone County.
The proposed $2.1 billion Lilly manufacturing campus north of Lebanon will include 13 buildings totaling more than 1.6 million square feet, according to a site plan submitted by the company.
One of the facilities will produce active pharmaceutical ingredients used in Lilly medications, while the other will focus on cell and gene therapy, said Jennifer Massey, associate vice president for manufacturing at Lilly.
“The reason we’re building these sites is to fulfill our purpose of creating medicines that help people around the world,” Massey told the commission. “Between the two sites, we’ll be producing medicines for patients who are facing illnesses such as diabetes, cancer, autoimmune disease and other severe illnesses.”
Plans call for the Lilly campus to be bounded to the north by County Road 450 North, to the west by Interstate 65 and to the east by the CSX railroad tracks. The campus’ southern border would be north of County Road 300 North, which would connect to Witt Road, and County Road 375 North.
The planning commission’s recommendation will be sent to Lebanon City Council, which can vote to approve Lilly’s site plan as early as next month.
Lilly plans to begin construction this spring and hopes for the site to be operational by 2026 or 2027.
The pharmaceutical giant will serve as the anchor tenant of the Indiana Economic Development Corp.’s LEAP District, a planned 11,000-acre advanced manufacturing and tech hub in Boone County. LEAP is an acronym for “Limited Exploration/Advanced Pace.”
The IEDC has spent more than $125 million to purchase nearly 1,600 acres of land in Boone County for the district. The remaining 7,400 acres under contract are tied up in purchase agreements that have not yet closed.
State officials are also exploring the feasibility of transporting up to 100 million gallons of water a day through a 35-mile pipeline to the LEAP district from the Wabash aquifer in Lafayette. The Lilly facility will rely on water from Lebanon Utilities.
The IEDC continues to pursue other potential suitors for the project.