5,000 Jobs Coming to City

5,000 Jobs Coming to City

5,000 Jobs Coming to City

September 19, 2003 - Noblesville Ledger

By: Joanna Hensley

NOBLESVILLE – Dirt is flying on the corporate campus’s first commercial development, nearly two years after the city set aside land for business development and a year after the city signed agreements with a developer to begin construction.

The sound of backhoes and asphalt movers has some city officials and business leaders hoping the noise will attract a crowd. Of other developers, that is, ready to move their businesses to town.

The first tenant is the Saxony development, which broke ground Thursday near Exit 10, the Interstate 69/Indiana 238 interchange. The 280-acre development promises to provide jobs for 5,000 workers in three million square feet of office, warehouse, and light industrial space, which developer Rick Arnos hopes will be part of Indiana’s life-sciences corridor along I-69.

According to a study commissioned by the Indiana Health Industry Forum, life-science jobs accounted for one out of every 10 jobs in the state and for more than $10 billion in wages since 2000.

“We’ve designed the development to attract the best and brightest companies – and employees – to this part of the corridor,” Arnos said in a recent press release.

The city has annexed the 3,200-acre area roughly bounded by Interstate 69, Indiana 37, Greenfield Avenue, and 141st Street and hopes to reap the benefits of revenue that businesses generate there. The idea is to get more businesses paying property taxes, leaving less of the burden on residents – not to mention create more local jobs for taxpayers.

“I’m like a racehorse at the starting line with the bit on my mouth,” Mayor Dennis Redick said. “The corporate campus will be the economic engine that drives Noblesville for years and years to come.”

The development is part of a 700-acre project, which also includes retail and homes, that straddles Noblesville and Fishers. The project is expected to cost $400-$500 million and will take about 15 years to fully build out.

Noblesville has yet to see any tenants in its sections, but the Wesleyan Church world headquarters is already under construction on Olio Road in Fishers.

The local chamber of commerce is “excited that groundbreaking is finally underway,” said Sharon McMahon, the chamber’s executive director. She said business owners are hopeful that widened and extended roads will make it easier to transport their goods and services.

“We’ve been waiting for a long time,” she said.

Public officials, developers, and utilities are already preparing for the corporate-campus boom.

The city is extending the sewers and building roads near Exit 10 as part of a part of a partnership with Republic developers.

According to a lengthy agreement, the work is funded primarily by the developer and will be completed years earlier than if the city had decided to make improvements on its own.

The city and the county area also working together to extend 146th Street from Indiana 37 to Boden Road, a road officials have called the backbone to the corporate campus.

Indiana American Water Co. also added a 750,000-gallon water tank this summer to prepare for increased demands in the corporate campus.

The tank serves southeast Noblesville, adding extra storage capacity, water pressure, and stabilize pressure during peak periods.