Risser also raised concerns about increased traffic and safety concerns connected to the nearby Prairie View Elementary School, which has property abutting portions of Tract 1 of the proposed business park development.
Tracey Noe, principal at Prairie View Elementary School, shared some of Risser’s concerns.
“The biggest thing we’re fighting right now this week is your industries that are M-1 aren’t clearing their sidewalks, so I had students walking in the road because they couldn’t get through the snow on the sidewalk,” Noe said. “So when you make decisions like this, you have to keep in mind that somebody might not take care of their property in order for us to get our students safely to the school. So I just want you to keep the school in mind as you progress down this path.”
In referencing the traffic concerns, Lord noted that he does not feel the project as planned will negatively impact traffic in the area at all.
“There is no curb cut here of any of this onto Regent Street,” Lord said of the planned development. “They’re not going by the school, not going by the single family (housing)... the only access to the two parcels to the south and southwest are off of C.R. 27 or off of Waterford Mills Parkway, and the only access to the northeast parcel is off of C.R. 27. So there are no homes, no residences impacted by expanded traffic.”
Lord also noted that many of the connector roads associated with the planned development are slated for improvements and upgrades in the next few years, a fact which he said should help to significantly reduce any traffic issues that may arise from the business park’s development.
“C.R. 40 is under an interlocal agreement with the county to be addressed and improved as you go from Dierdorff east over to U.S. 33,” Lord said. “Dierdorff has been buffed up, C.R. 38 east from Ind. 15 going up toward U.S. 33 has different project components, the C.R. 38 bridge is going to be replaced someday, and something is going to be done at the C.R. 38/U.S. 33 intersection. So when everything’s done out there, and that will be at the time this is unfolding, this area will be very well served.”
In the end, the commission determined that development of the property as a business park would be in the best interest of the city at this time, and a motion was approved to send the request on to the Goshen City Council with a favorable recommendation.
“We can’t stay where we are,” Plan Commission member Connie Garber said of the need for the planned business park. “Progress means change.”