PRINCETON -- Gibson County Redevelopment Commission tabled action for more deliberation on CWK Investments' proposal to build an apartment complex off Coal Mine Road in Fort Branch.
The proposed $12.2 million complex would produce nearly 150 one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments. Coal Mine Road would have to be widened, and a new north-south-running road would need
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S2 G to be constructed off Coal Mine Road for access to the complex.
The project would employ 150 workers at its construction peak, with 30 to 40 employed at the beginning and more than 75 by the project's end, according to the project's contractor, Kenny Reinbrecht.
CWK Investments is seeking use of up to $1.5 million in Toyota Tax Increment Financing for the project.
Members of the commission requested more detailed information for a special Oct. 9 meeting. The details requested included a breakdown of the value of parcels in question, which multiple members found concerning, particularly one piece of land for $650,000.
Steve Jones of United Consulting said the land was valued by an appraiser from Evansville. He said the estimates are based on a worst-case scenario and could fluctuate once plans are finalized for the project. "We have to go through a formalized process," he said.
Another issue raised during discussion with Reinbrecht and CWK Investments' attorney Krista Lockyear was the proposed project's road being so close in proximity to the fence at Fort Branch Elementary School.
Reinbrecht assured the commission there would be curbs on the road running near the school's fence line.
Commission member Bruce McIntosh asked how long the project had been in the works. "About two months," said Reinbrecht, noting that another project had fallen through for the company; therefore, it was ready to move quickly on this one. He stressed the timetable for CWK Investments is thin, saying delaying construction could put the project in jeopardy of not being completed in time for the apartments to be rented in 2018.
"We could be turning dirt in two or three weeks," Reinbrecht added.
Fort Branch Town Board member Scott Michael told the commission Fort Branch is in favor of the project and expressed concerns about more traffic at the intersection. He said he has seen the Indiana Department of Transportation numbers on the intersection of U.S. 41 and Coal Mine Road and said they exceed 50,000 vehicles per day.
Originally, commission member George Ballard suggested tabling the issue for Oct. 23, but that was shortened by two weeks for the benefit of CWK Investments, which Lockyear said was an eternity in the construction industry.
The commission will reconvene Oct. 9 to further examine the request.