Sky’s The Limit For River Ridge
As the River Ridge Commerce Center in southeast Indiana nears a decade of redevelopment work, the sprawling development is closing in on a major milestone: 10,000 employees. The former U.S. Army ammunition depot covers more than 6,000 acres along the Ohio River in Jeffersonville and Charlestown and is home to a diverse mix of more than 50 companies, including Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN). But Executive Director Jerry Acy, who notes that only about 20 percent of the property is developed, says growth is a long way from over. "The objective of the organization is to replace all of the lost economic activity when the ammunition plant shut down," said Acy. "And at the height of production there were like 27,000 people working there, so that’s our ultimate goal, to exceed 27,000 people and to develop that entire site."
In an interview on this weekend’s edition of Inside INdiana Business with Gerry Dick, Acy talked about the mix of companies at River Ridge and vision for the future.
River Ridge is located at the former site of the Indiana Army Ammunitions Plant, which ended production after the Vietnam War in 1972. The sprawling, 6,000-acre development includes three miles of frontage on the Ohio River in Jeffersonville and Charlestown.
The more than 50 companies that now call River Ridge home include a major Amazon, which has a major distribution center there, global medical device company MedLine Industries and Enjoy Life, North America’s largest allergy free bakery.
In July, California-based Niagara Bottling LLC has announced big expansion plans, including a new $56 million bottling facility at River Ridge that is expected to employ about 60 by the end of next year.
The park’s economic impact is expected to swell above $2 billion this year, but Acy says that may be just the beginning. "We still have about 3,500 acres of good, useable property to go," said Acy, who adds a 300 acre Class A office development, sparked by a new Interstate 265 interchange, is the next major project for the park.