Business property taxes, and not residents', paid for the $5.5 million worth of improvements to Maysville Road.
Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry and members of the city’s redevelopment commission, City Utilities and public works staffs, along with nearby business representatives, May 30 cut the ribbon on the completed project.
The improvements run between Meijer Drive and Stellhorn Road and include new trails connecting nearby housing complexes to businesses, a turn lane in front of Taylor Chapel United Methodist Church, water mains, sanitary sewers and stormwater pipes.
The money came from the Maysville-Stellhorn Economic Development Area TIF district created in 2004.
Nancy Townsend, director of the city's redevelopment commission, said.
"We've been collecting money from businesses," she said. The project "was funded entirely from the businesses in the area."
The area, which once was farmland, has seen huge growth in the last two decades, with the addition of Interstate 469 in 1995. It has a Meijer on one side of Maysville and Chapel Ridge Shopping Center with its numerous restaurants and retail stores on the other. The city counts over 80 businesses as well as retail shops, churches, homes and apartments now there.
Quality-of-life investments are important, said Henry, who's looking to get a record fourth consecutive term in November's election and has touted record investments in neighborhood infrastructure improvements during his tenure.
Every company the city talks to about coming to Fort Wayne asks, do you have a trail system, he said.
Fort Wayne's trail system has grown from 40 miles when he became mayor to over 100 miles today.
The city listed 27 major projects under construction for the week, including Phase II of State Boulevard from Clinton to Cass streets, Dupont Road, and the Hillegas and Coliseum Boulevard intersection improvements.
In March, Henry announced that a record $31 million will be invested in neighborhood transportation improvements in 2019 that includes road resurfacing, alley reconstruction and sidewalk repairs.