Chesterton Tribune



Chamber reports on State of the Tri-Towns

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The highlight of the Duneland Chamber of Commerce’s annual meeting last week was the installation of its 2017 Chair, Jim Starin of Starin Marketing.

But Chamber President Maura Durham also gave a brief State of the Tri-Towns presentation, working with talking points provided by Chesterton, Porter, and Burns Harbor.


The big news from the Town of Chesterton in 2016: building, Durham said. Infrastructure work began on what will be the largest subdivision ever in modern Chesterton, Easton Park, just east of the terminus of East Porter Ave. and 250E. When built out, Easton Park will have fully 350 single-family homes.

Construction also began last year on two new senior living facilities--StoryPoint on Dickinson Road (162 units) and the Residences of Chesterton (110 units)--and is expected to begin this year on Eagle Crossing, an upscale apartment complex at Sidewalk Road and Kelle Drive (170 units).

Other projects in Chesterton at various stages in the pipeline: a large-scale fiber optic network to serve business and the Duneland Schools; continued review of the feasibility of establishing a railroad quiet zone in the Downtown; and the installation of new playground equipment, splash pads, and restroom facilities at various of the town’s parks, funded through a $2-million bond issue.


Headlining the Town of Porter’s achievements in 2016 was the re-pave of fully 22 miles of roads and alleys. “Included in this project were many new ADA compliant ramps and sidewalks along the highly traveled Wagner Road and Lincoln Street corridors,” Durham said. “The project also involved re-paving the parking lots at Porter town hall, the Porter police station, the Porter public works and fire station, and Hawthorne Park.”

The town will also be re-paving eight additional miles of roadway in 2017, funded through a Community Crossings grant from the Indiana Department of Transportation.

Other highlights:

* New playground equipment will be installed at Hawthorne Park this year.

* The last local stretch of the Dunes Kankakee Trail was completed along Ind. 49 in 2016, providing direct access from Indiana Dunes State Park to the Dorothy Buell Memorial Visitor Center.

* Tenants have been found for all businesses in the Downtown, leaving no vacancies on Lincoln Street.

* Seven new homes were built in 2016, the most since 2010.

Burns Harbor

Among other things in 2016, the Town of Burns Harbor’s Sanitation Department moved into the town hall and extended its office hours to better serve residents, Durham said.

And the town introduced leaf collection service.

Park Director Kim Burton was honored with the Ivan H. Brinegar Management Award by the Indiana Association of Cities and Town for “her 20 years of service to the park, her strong leadership, and her contributions to the community,” Durham said.

And indeed, last year was a great one for the Park Department in Burns Harbor: more than 400 children and their families attended the Easter Egg Hunt--and the Spectacular Easter Egg Hunt for kids with special needs--at Lakeland Park; and the third annual Footloose event attracted nearly 400.

Also enhancing the town’s community was the inaugural season of the Food Truck Square, which opened in August at the corner of Westport and Haglund roads.

Meanwhile, 2017 is a red-letter year for the town, as it celebrates its half-century anniversary as an incorporated municipality.



Posted 2/76/2017




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