River Ridge Selling 52 Acres for Large New Commercial Development

River Ridge Selling 52 Acres for Large New Commercial Development

JEFFERSONVILLE — Business at River Ridge Commerce Center continues amid the coronavirus pandemic, the River Ridge Development Authority board of directors approved a land sale for a new development.

The board of directors unanimously approved a resolution authorizing Jerry Acy, executive director of River Ridge Development Authority, to negotiate the sale of 52 acres within the industrial park for an undisclosed industrial or commercial development. The board also approved investments totaling $1 million for infrastructure projects.

Monday’s board meeting was presented virtually based on guidance from Gov. Eric Holcomb directing public agencies to present important meetings using electronic formats, and it followed the cancelation of the board of directors’ March 16 meeting due to concerns about social distancing.

According to a press release from River Ridge, the proceeds from the 52-acre land sale are expected to produce $4 million in funding for additional development and operations at the park. Acy said although the pandemic has slowed communications with outside developers and companies over the past month, he is happy to be able to move forward with negotiations for the land sale.

“We are pleased to be able to maintain positive momentum at River Ridge,” Acy said in the press release. “We expect this land sale to bring more major development, create good-paying jobs for our community and generate new revenue for the state and local governments.”

One of the major infrastructure improvements approved by the board includes a $610,000 contract for HWC Engineering Inc. to design and plan the building of two, 2 million-gallon water storage tanks for both current and future development locations. The board also approved a $194,785 contract with Browning, Day, Mullins, Dierdorf to complete construction documents for repairs of the Gateway Lake.

The board approved a $96,700 contract for United Consulting to complete the design to widen International Drive from South Boundary Patrol Road to Indiana 265, along with a $69,775 contract for Louisville Water Co. to design and install a system to monitor water pressures, tank levels, loss of power and provide automated management of River Ridge’s water system.

The board also approved a $51,550 contract for a proposal from Redwing Ecological Services Inc. to complete stream mitigation permit documents for about 300 acres at River Ridge.

“Despite a challenging business and working environment due to the global pandemic, our staff and board are continuing to make progress redeveloping the park,” Acy said in the release. “These investments will support additional growth and ensure River Ridge remains a great home for local, regional and national businesses.”

Acy noted that the River Ridge Development Authority is considered an essential operation due to its support of companies and the water system, and it supports essential businesses such as fulfillment centers, food processing, pharmaceuticals and water bottling, he said.

He said the River Ridge Development Authority staff is following guidelines regarding social distancing, and employees can work full-time or part-time from home depending on their individual job responsibilities. Although companies such as automotive suppliers in the commerce park have recently cut back scheduling and staffing, he does not know of any closures in the park related to the coronavirus pandemic.

“As far as the park is concerned, the companies are pretty well self-contained in the buildings they operate out of, and we don’t have the oversight for compliance,” he said. “I think all the companies, from the communication we have had, have specific guidelines for employees, and it appears that everyone is trying do their part and do the right thing.”