HANCOCK COUNTY — It remains to be seen what new major corporate development projects Hancock County can hook for 2014, but it recently chummed the waters with a fairly significant piece of bait.
The state’s Office of Community and Rural Affairs, along with the Hancock Economic Development Council, announced that 225 acres spread across four parcels in Progress Park in Greenfield received a designation as a “Shovel Ready Silver Site.”
In developers’ lingo, “shovel ready” means a site has been properly zoned and upgraded with infrastructure so a developer can get to work right away.
The site near the Interstate 70-Ind. 9 interchange is the second site in Hancock County to receive the designation in approximately the past eight years.
Some 80 acres situated immediately east of Universtiy Loft Company at Airpark East near CR 300N and 400W carry the designation as well.
“Shovel ready is a huge advantage, and when other counties don’t have that, a project like Progress Park just stands out,” said John Kennedy, president of the HEDC board and president of Greenfield Banking Co.
In addition zoning and infrastructure, sites must have clear title and survey; local government support for development; an established price; an environmental assessment; and an audit to define any protected wetlands.