It may seem like nothing is happening at the 6 & 13 Technology and Industrial Park, established by the town of Syracuse. But behind the scenes a lot is happening.
The 62-acre technology and industrial park is located on the southwest corner of US 6 and SR 13, in Elkhart County.
One of the behind the scenes tasks is getting the property annexed into the town limits. Henry DeJulia, town manager, stated while the annexation aspect has been worked on for a while, things are getting ironed out with Elkhart County. “When you have two government entities you’re dealing with who meet once a month, it takes some time,” DeJulia stated. But the deal is getting closer. One hurdle was regulations to allow property to be annexed into a town, even if it was not contiguous.
Good news is there have been inquiries and interest in sites. “We are working with a couple (interested parties),” said DeJulia.
The park is certified by the state as a shovel ready site for any interested business. What this means, according to DeJulia, is the infrastructure is there — paved roads to the lots and all utilities are in place within the park. Zoned as an M-1 DPUD or manufacturing, science and technology clusters, research and development, as well as traditional uses. There is a 10-inch sewer main inside and throughout the park with a 1.05 million gallons per day capacity and a usage of 500,000 gallons per day. The 12-inch water main throughout the park has the capacity of 2.3 million gallons per day and a usage of 500,000 gallons per day.
There are 14 lots ranging from 1.26 acres to 7.43 acres and can be combined. Incentive programs are available, as it is in a tax increment finance district, available for both new and existing businesses. The financial incentives are determined on an individual basis and range from direct financial cost reductions to assistance on buildings and infrastructure to job training.
Plans for such a park have been in the works for close to 12 years by the town administration. The existing industrial park has no space available to expand and no buildings available to purchase. Other major industries in town are landlocked with little or no space to expand. “We don’t have any other land,” DeJulia said. “Now they have a place to go. It is important to keep businesses here to grow and expand. It’s important to have a place if they do that.”
Various sites were looked at and studies completed. But due to one reason or another, those areas were not ideal. The town purchased the property in 2006 from NiSource and took ownership in 2007.
DeJulia noted this site was chosen because of its location — at the intersection of two main highways — US 6 and SR 13. It’s also not far from US 30 and US 20. CSX is two miles south of the park and passenger trains are available in South Bend and Elkhart. There are also airports available, ranging from six miles (Goshen Municipal) to 130 miles (Chicago O’Hare International).
The technology park was planned and developed based on a comprehensive plan with provision for roads, transport and public utilities, for the use of enterprises. The park was planned to target-subassembly and component parts production for electronics, metal, animal pharmaceutical, agribusiness production companies, cost sensitive back office and customer support operations for financial services and computer software development companies and testing stations for biotechnology research and development.
The ultimate goal is to have $14 million of new investment and 300 full-time manufacturing and technology related jobs.
This location is a window of opportunity for any business to locate or expand.