On June 30, the South Central Indiana Talent Region had the honor of hosting Governor Holcomb and Secretary of Commerce Bradley Chambers, as well as representatives from Accelerate Rural Indiana, East Central IN Regional Partnership, and North Central Region.
Columbus Major Jim Lienhoop stated that “what attracts people [to regions] are communities that are welcoming, safe, fun, and that offer outstanding schools,” and our region has been working tirelessly to achieve this goal. The gathering was to celebrate just one of the READI facilitated projects in the South Central region, the NexusPark Campus, which is the facility that will be replacing FairOaks Mall in Columbus.
Governor Holcomb coined this time of economic development a “transformational spot” as all 92 counties in Indiana “came together and started not just thinking about the future but got very involved in taking ideas and blueprints and turning them into READI realities.” Part of South Central’s ‘READI reality’ was seen by the public for the first-time last Thursday and was met by big smiles and excited handshakes; to say the room was abuzz with anticipation for NexusPark would be an understatement.
“This project, is exactly what we were hoping for, this kind of outside the box thinking where its customer-centric; a community magnet that’s going to pull thousands upon thousands of residents and visitors to this very patch of property,” said Governor Holcomb. The NexusPark Campus will feature a physician hub curated by Columbus Regional Health, a teaching kitchen, numerous commercial spaces, multipurpose meeting spaces, interior and exterior walking trails, a fieldhouse equipped with a full soccer field and multiple basketball courts, and so much more.
It is with programs such as READI that we can build projects like NexusPark from the ground-up, and in turn, make these projects a reality. A reality that creates hundreds upon thousands of job opportunities while improving the quality of life in our beloved region. As Governor Holcomb said best, the South Central Indiana Talent Region has so much more to discover, and we are thrilled with the idea of Holcomb’s potential “READI Repeat.”
South Central Attendees
- Mayor Jim Lienhoop, City of Columbus Mayor
- Shawn Gerkin, Clerk Treasurer City of North Vernon
- Jackie Hill, Jackson County Industrial Development
- Kathy Ertel, Jennings County Economic Development
- Jason Hester, Greater Columbus Indiana Economic Development
- Dan Davis, Community Foundation of Jackson County
- Cindy Frey, Columbus Area Chamber of Commerce
- John Burnett, Community Education Coalition
- Eric Frey, Southern Indiana Housing & Community Development
- Trena Carter, Southern Indiana Housing & Community Development
- Cory Whitesell, HWC Engineering