PRINCETON — Gibson County Commissioners endorsed a request Wednesday for use of $13.9 million in revenue from the Patoka-Union Township Tax Increment Finance District for a proposed major overhaul of parking and access road improvements at Toyota.
The request moves to the Gibson County Redevelopment Commission, which ultimately decides which projects are funded with use of some of the property taxes paid by Toyota and other property within the district.
Tami Muckerheide of Gibson County Economic Development Corporation said the proposed improvements will ease traffic congestion and solve some safety issues.
Toyota Motor Manufacturing Indiana Senior Maintenance Manager Mike Wingo detailed project and the need for the improvement as the plant’s production has grown over the years.
Wingo said some 7,200 employees, plus support service employees and construction workers on the premises add to the traffic flow.
He said the congestion in parking and access to the east plan backs up traffic. “It’s a safety issue for anyone traveling on US 41 at 6 a.m.,” he said.
Beam Longest & Neff engineers propose three new signaled intersections, improvements to County Road 100 East, two new access roads, expanding the east parking lot and reconfiguring Maple Tree Drive.
The total project cost is estimated at just over $13.9 million, with estimated construction costs around $12.7 million.
Gibson County Commissioner Steve Bottoms said the work will make the area safer. “They’ve been looking at it for over a year,” he said. “The intent of the TIF money is primarily to benefit the TIF district and this is actually in the TIF district, benefiting both the county and the taxpayer,” he said as he offered the motion to froward the project to the redevelopment commission for a decision.
Board of Commissioners President Gerald Bledsoe offered a second to the motion, which passed 2-0. Commissioner Mary Key was not present at Wednesday’s meeting.
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