Apr. 8—TIPTON — A major mixed-use development targeted at travelers along U.S. 31 is being proposed for the southeast corner of the intersection of the highway and Indiana 28 in Tipton County.
According to a concept plan presented by Matt Skelton, a lawyer at Church, Church, Hittle and Antrim representing the developers, Thursday night to the Tipton County Plan Commission, the development would include one or more hotels, a bank, light industrial, a travel plaza, a MedCheck, recreational vehicle stopover, restaurants and a dog park.
The development is seeking to rezone the 71.25-acre property from agriculture to a planned unit development (PUD). The Commission voted 6-0, with new board member Jeremy Bennett abstaining, to give the rezoning request a favorable recommendation to the Tipton County Board of Commissioners, who will have the final say on the rezoning request.
According to the concept plan, visitors would enter the development from Indiana 28. The travel center, which would include a food court with various restaurants, convenience store-style shopping and fresh produce, would be located on the north end of the property near the entrance; additional restaurants, commercial space and hotel(s) on the west side of the property near U.S. 31; a dog park on the east side; RV parking near the middle of the development; and the light industrial development located south of Dixon Creek, which could include businesses like a distribution center or similar last-mile businesses.
Skelton said details — such as the brand of the hotel, bank and restaurants — are not yet known, adding that the concept plan presented Thursday is just that and subject to change as the project progresses.
Skelton said the accounting and consulting firm Baker Tilly is finalizing the total investment amount, but by his estimation, the development is a $50 million or more investment.
If the rezoning request is approved, the project will still need future development and drainage approvals.
Most notably, the project still needs to receive Indiana 28 entrance approval from the Indiana Department of Transportation. Without that approval from INDOT, Skelton said, the development is very unlikely to move forward.
A timeframe for the beginning of construction is still in flux, though Skelton said the plan is to construct everything in one phase, with an estimated one- to two-year completion time once construction begins.
If the development does come to fruition, it would be a significant addition to an area where local officials have put an emphasis on large-scale development due to its proximity to U.S. 31. The U.S. 31 and Indiana 28 intersection already includes Stellantis' Tipton Transmission Plant, Love's Truck Stop and a car dealership.
"Especially after they (the state of Indiana) are finished converting 31 (to a free-flowing highway), Tipton is going to be a popular place, and there's gonna be a lot of people driving past," Skelton said. "Of all the places that you could choose to stop along the highway, we want here to be where they stop."
Tyler Juranovich can be reached at 765-454-8577, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @tylerjuranovich.