Preliminary work on the Ind. 49 utility corridor is proceeding, Chesterton
Town Attorney Chuck Lukmann reported at Monday’s meeting of the
“Hopefully we’ll be way down the road as far as engineering plans at your
next meeting,” Lukmann said.
Lukmann did recommend to the commission—as he already has to the Utility
Service Board and the Town Council—to jettison its long-time relationship
with H.J. Umbaugh & Associates and to retain the financial consultancy
services of London Witte Group of Indianapolis.
Members did so with a 4-0 vote. Member Sharon Darnell was not in attendance.
The idea of the Ind. 49 corridor is the installation of sanitary sewer,
stormwater, water, and fiber optic infrastructure ultimately as far south as
U.S. Highway 6, to open that corridor chiefly to commercial development.
Phase I of the project includes the extension of a sanitary main from a
point east of Ind. 49 in Coffee Creek Center under the Indiana Toll Road,
then west under Ind. 49, and then south to the Town of Chesterton’s
corporate limit on what is known as the Pope property.
Earlier this year the commission created a new tax increment financing
district to include all recently annexed property south of the Toll Road, as
one means of financing the project.
Although the books have been closed on the South Calumet District project
for some time, a handful of trees installed in the district and still under
warranty have died, Town Engineer Mark O’Dell said. General contractor
Larson-Danielson Construction Company Inc. is aware of the problem and will
replant them in the fall, after the summer heat has waned, O’Dell reported.
While on the subject of the South Calumet District, Member Jim Ton took a
moment to welcome to the neighborhood the district’s newest resident: the
Teachers Credit Union at the intersection of 1100N and 100E. “It’s a really
nice building,” Ton said. “They’ve done a great job converting it to their
needs. It’s really picked up that corner. And I’d just like to welcome them
to the South Calumet District and Chesterton.”
Meanwhile, Ton did have a bit of bad news from the Northwestern Indiana
Regional Planning Commission, which declined to find the proposed Dickinson
Road extension a “regionally significant project, especially for congestion
management,” thereby making the project ineligible for state and federally
funding under its 2040 plan.
“We’ll try other possible avenues,” Ton said.
Members voted 4-0 to approve two claims: $8,499 from Harris Welsh & Lukmann;
and $585 from 1st American Management Company.