ANDERSON — The Anderson City Council gave tentative approval for the rezoning of 520 acres along Layton Road.

The City Council on Thursday passed an ordinance through two of the required three readings for a request from the city of Anderson, the Indiana Municipal Power Agency (IMPA) and 13 property owners to rezone 520 acres between Layton and Park roads and from 53rd to 67th streets from residential to industrial use.

The property includes the IMPA peaking power plant.

Tim Stires, deputy director of the Anderson Municipal Development Department, said having the peaking plant on the property makes it ideal for rezoning and future development.

“The hope is that new development will take place,” he said.

Councilwoman Rebecca Crumes asked if there was a potential developer for the site.

Greg Winkler, executive director of the Anderson Economic Development Department, said there is some interest in the property but without the change in zoning it would not allow for industrial development.

“This is a unique property with the IMPA plant located on the property,” he said.

Rob Sparks, CEO of the Corporation for Economic Development, said there are scattered residential properties around the site but there has been no remonstrance to the rezoning.

Sparks said the city has spent approximately $10 million to put the necessary infrastructure in place for the Flagship Enterprise Center directly to the south.

“Having the zoning in place will make the property attractive,” he said. “Companies are looking for shovel-ready sites for development.”

Winkler said any additional expenses incurred by the city will be a part of any development agreement with a potential investor.

“The development will be similar to what is located in the Flagship,” he said.

Crumes said companies locate in Anderson because of fewer restrictions. He added that the city needs housing and investment in the areas away from Interstate 69.

Councilman Ollie H. Dixon said companies look to poor disenfranchised communities to receive incentives for their developments.

Winkler said in the past General Motors took a lot from the community.

“If we don’t think a company will be a good corporate neighbor, we’re not interested in them going to Anderson,” he said.

The council also passed through two readings a rezoning for the former McMahan-Lieb warehouse at 1534 Jackson St.

Winco Fireworks International is purchasing the 34,000-square-foot building from Apple Lane LLC.

The company will use the facility as a warehouse and distribution center for pre-packaged fireworks sold throughout the Midwest.

The rezoning would allow for the fireworks warehouse and the company is spending an estimated $300,000 to install the state-required sprinkler and fire suppression systems.

Bill Nagengast, the current owner of the building, said they will continue to use 5,000 square feet for their inspection business.
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