While 2016 was a huge year for growth in Hamilton County, 2017 already looks like it could be an even bigger year for the communities of Hamilton County. Projects already underway or set to open soon include Federal Hill Commons in Noblesville, IKEA and Top Golf in Fishers and the Midtown Redevelopment Project in Carmel. The new year has also brought many new proposed projects in these communities. With each project comes both excitement and of course, controversy. Here is a breakdown of some of the larger projects proposed so far this year.
With growth continuing all across Noblesville, once sleepy downtown Noblesville has once again become vibrant and traffic continues to get worse through the area. The Noblesville City Council has given preliminary approval on a $75 Million Pleasant Street expansion project that would include a new bridge across the White River, additional lanes and adding roundabouts to aid with the flow of traffic. The goal of this project is to reduce congestion on the downtown square and allow traffic to pass from east to west with more ease.
Fishers downtown corridor continues to grow and the latest proposal is to turn the seldom used Nickel Plate railroad track into a multi-use trail similar to the Monon Trail. The trail would begin at 96th Street and head north along the current train tracks towards downtown Noblesville, connecting the two communities for bikers, joggers and walkers. Although most love the idea of an additional trail, there is a vocal group of citizens opposing the idea of removing the train tracks in order to build the trail. This group believes that trains are a significant part of the history of these communities and would like to see services such as the State Fair Train and Polar Express continued. Ideally, this group would like to see the trail added adjacent to the railroad tracks. This fight has yet to play out and will be one to watch over the coming months as it could have a drastic effect on the areas close to the current train tracks.
Building on the success of Grand Park and the Grand Junction downtown district, Westfield City Council recently approved what is being called the Grand Millennium Project at the corner of SR32 and US31. The proposed project would include a convention center, hotel, retail, office space, housing and a YMCA. With such rapid growth in the area, some residents believe that this project is too large for their small town and are opposing this idea. This project in addition to the Woodwind Golf Course redevelopment proposal could have a significant impact in Westfield over the coming years.