A public hearing has been set for May 6 for input on three downtown Shelbyville redevelopment projects including the conversion of the Methodist Building into retail opportunities and apartments. File photo
A public hearing has been set for May 6 for input on three downtown Shelbyville redevelopment projects including the conversion of the Methodist Building into retail opportunities and apartments. File photo
The $20 million dollar downtown Shelbyville redevelopment plan will have a public hearing at City Hall on May 6.

On Monday at the Shelbyville Redevelopment Commission meeting, the public hearing was set for its next meeting which will include representatives of Genesis Property Development, the contractor that is proposing a 13-home neighborhood on the former Major Hospital site, a townhome/row houses development across Washington St. from the neighborhood, a public parking garage located behind the Methodist Building on the downtown Public Square, and the redevelopment of the Methodist Building and the former Bradley Hall Furniture building.

“Essentially, what we did was ask the Redevelopment Commission to allow this to move forward to a public hearing to receive public comment,” said Shelbyville Mayor Tom DeBaun, who is a strong advocate of downtown redevelopment. “And this allows us to negotiate with the one group that submitted the proposal so we can hone in on the costs.”

The current recommended project budgets are $1,410,000 for the Hamilton-Major Infrastructure Development on the former Major Hospital site, $4,450,000 for the public parking garage and street improvements, and $16,500,000 for the reconstruction of the Public Square, which would eliminate the circular traffic pattern and straighten out the roadway more in scope to its original design.

“The costs in the proposals are all based on estimates,” explained DeBaun. “No significant design or engineering is done. The goal would be to drive those estimates down as we refine and design.”

The May 6 meeting will allow for public input, direct questions to Genesis Property Development and offer the commission the opportunity to inquire about the proposals.

According to the Shelbyville Downtown Development Proposal sent to The Shelbyville News by City of Shelbyville Attorney Jennifer Meltzer, Genesis Property Development has already purchased the Methodist Building in downtown Shelbyville and is in the process of acquiring the Bradley Hall building that sits adjacent to the historic cornerstone building.

The business plan is to create upper level apartments in the Methodist Building and use the ground floors at both buildings for retail space. 

The parking garage, which would sit to the west of the Methodist Building on the site of the current Bradley Hall warehouse, would allow for approximately 110 free public parking spaces that would be available during the construction phase on the Public Square. The City of Shelbyville would own the parking garage upon completion of the project.

“I don’t see us charging for parking,” said DeBaun when asked about the parking garage. 

The land that formerly housed Major Hospital is now owned by the City of Shelbyville. The development of that property would immediately pay dividends.

“The City owns the land ... the City will continue to own the land ... the City will act as the agent in selling those lots,” said DeBaun. “Right now, that land is not assessed on the former hospital site because it was owned prior by the hospital, a not-for-profit, and now it is owned by us, which we’re a government entity so we don’t pay property taxes, so we’ll see an immediate value from that through the sale of the lots and the development of the homes.”

The proposal discusses the reconnect of Franklin Street through the former hospital site, the installation of sidewalks, street lighting and utilities, landscaping and road work on West Street. 

This design-build project concept is still new to Shelbyville, according to DeBaun. The Shelbyville/Shelby County Animal Shelter was built in a similar fashion. Discussions have been critical as to how to make these multi-million dollar projects work simultaneously.

“How does this work and what’s the timing? How are we going to pay for it because we don’t want to impact the tax rate?,” said DeBaun. “We want it to come through TIF revenue or racino dollars or relinquishment dollars from INDOT. We don’t want it to be an additional tax burden on the community. We want it to be tax neutral. We want it to add value.”

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