Origin Park is predicted to have multi-million greenback financial leverage in southern Indiana – 89.Three WFPL Information Louisville
The group behind a large park in southern Indiana has been showing its recreational and environmental benefits for months, but a new report suggests this could be a financial boon to the area as well.
According to River Heritage Conservancy (RHC), the construction and operation of Origin Park will create more than 3,200 jobs, according to a new financial impact analysis conducted by HR&A Advisors. The park, along with an “outdoor adventure” attraction within its confines, is estimated to generate approximately $ 265 million in economic activity.
“It brings the numbers beyond the horizon that we always strive for – that more can be done, more can be expected,” said Scott Martin, executive director of RHC. “If great can be achieved anywhere, it can be done here, and we expect great results too.”
HR&A vice chairman Candace Damon presented the results of the economic report at a breakfast event on Thursday. Dozens of local stakeholders – including nonprofits and governing bodies from Clarksville, Jeffersonville, Clark Counties, and Floyd Counties – attended the gathering. New Albany is the only major community near the proposed property that Origin Park did not sponsor.
During her presentation, Damon said the impact of building Origin Park falls under three umbrellas: brand impact, economic impact, and equity impact.
“The value of imagination and joy is most important for parks and parking systems,” said Damon. “But that’s hard to quantify and even harder to monetize. So we wanted to look at the ability of this potentially great park to improve the image of the region. “
Origin Park could attract between 2,750 and 4,550 new, well-trained workers to the area, Damon said. These new residents and workers fall under the branding category as the park would bring new amenities that would make southern Indiana a more attractive place to live.
That population growth could then generate between $ 163 million and $ 325 million in net new local spending, including housing, retail, and restaurants.
“The total spending is enough to cover the park’s cost of capital in the first generation of its operating income,” said Damon. “And I think that’s really the strongest argument why you should invest in this park, because this park is so special.”
Origin Park construction will create nearly 1,900 jobs, including construction workers, contractors and landscapers. It is forecast that the park operation will create another 40 permanent jobs.
According to the impact study, visitors to Origin Park could spend an additional 8 to 23 million US dollars annually in southern Indiana and increase the average home value by up to 11,200 US dollars.
Damon said the park will also have an impact on local health as it fills a void in usable green space along the Ohio River. Land that will eventually be home to Origin Park is less than 15 minutes by bike from downtown Clarksville, Jeffersonville, and New Albany.
“I think the potential of this great park to empower this region by building on the benefits of proximity to density – while celebrating the alternative, more affordable lifestyle available on this side of the river – is truly extraordinary, and me looking forward to seeing you succeed, ”said Damon.
RHC also plans to add an “outdoor adventure park” to Origin Park. The designs are not final, but Thursday’s presentation included a picture of people doing white water rafting on a waterway. Origin Park will be built along the Ohio River and Silver Creek, which separates Counties Clark and Floyd.
“The park always had to have an activity center that was very motivating for our community to be outside,” said Martin. “It’s also a big deal to integrate it in such a way that it is a walkable destination. That lags a bit behind the rest of the master plan, so we’re reviewing it around a number of options. “
Origin Park’s master plan includes nearly 600 acres of historic industrial land in Counties Clark and Floyd. Construction is expected to cost around $ 155 million.