February 2, 2014

Movin' on up

High-end housing planned for Logansport's east side

by Mitchell Kirk Pharos-Tribune

---- — A plan is in the works to bring high-end condominiums to Logansport’s east side.

Logansport Mayor Ted Franklin announced Friday the new housing is part of an initiative “aimed at enhancing economic development prospects in the area surrounding the Logansport Mall.”

The announcement comes between two Logansport City Council votes to authorize about $300,000 for the purchase of about 20 acres on the city’s east side. Those acres near High Street and Yorktown Road will be the location of the development, Franklin said. City council will vote on second reading Monday. Council members approved the measure on first reading 6-1 in January.

“This acquisition is an investment in our future,” Franklin said. “It gives the city the ability to target future economic growth. Our first goal is to address the emerging need to attract developers who are willing to construct and market mid- to high-level stand-alone and condominium-type housing.”

The initiative is being planned in conjunction with the city, the Logansport Planning Department and the City of Logansport Economic Development Organization, or CLEDO. A three-day planning charrette is scheduled for April, where citizens and stakeholders are encouraged to come and go as they please to provide feedback and concerns officials will use when developing a master plan for the project.

Following the charrette and the completion of a master plan, Franklin said the city will seek a developer to sell the land to and take on the project.

Franklin could comment little on the details of the project until a master plan is finished, but said thoughts consist of high-end condominiums ranging in price from $200,000 to $250,000, a rooftop garden, the possibility of single family housing in the area as well, all of it with the intent of attracting more businesses to the area and creating a “walkable neighborhood.”

Franklin added the development could also likely serve as a buffer between businesses near the mall and the residences on High Street, which has been a concern for homeowners since development started increasing in the area.

The condominiums will attract businesses looking to establish in Logansport who would have otherwise passed up the city for its lack of housing for middle and upper management positions, Franklin said. He added he hopes it will also be a draw for professionals who work in the city traveling from more desirable homes in cities like Kokomo, Lafayette, Monticello and Rochester.

The planning charrette is scheduled for April 3 through 5 in the Community Room at CLEDO, 310 S. Pearl St. More details will be released as the dates get closer.

“We want to make sure that appropriate changes will happen in that area, so we’re inviting stakeholders to participate in identifying how they would like to to see that area developed,” said Logansport-Cass County Planning Director Arin Shaver.

Franklin shared a similar sentiment.

“This is important for the economic future of the mall area and we think that it’s critical that we get input from the residents and business owners surrounding the mall,” he said. “We need to keep in mind that any economic changes that are proposed for this area should not negatively affect existing neighborhoods, businesses and homeowners.”

Everyone in the community is invited to participate in the charrette planning process. Those interested should call Teresa Zimmerman, administrative assistant at CLEDO, at 574-722-5988 to RSVP.

Mitchell Kirk is a staff reporter at the Pharos-Tribune. He can be reached at 574-732-5130 or Follow him: @PharosMAK