The Indianapolis City-County Council held its first full meeting of 2023 Monday and approved numerous proposals to address a housing shortage.
New proposals introduced support planned City Market redevelopment projects. The entire block is set to receive $12 million in tax increment financing, or TIF, to build hundreds of new housing units, retail and public spaces. TIF projects capture future tax dollars brought through the development.
Final approval for another TIF funding proposal project in Broad Ripple was passed, but councilors expressed concern about the financial impact of the Guilford Midtown Project. Deputy Mayor of Economic Development Scarlett Andrews says the department is committed to monitoring these proposals.
“To understand closely to understand what the best policy should be in the future --including inflation, interest rates, construction prices of key materials -- and understanding what rent rates and occupancy rates are in our high-demand neighborhoods,” Andrews said.
The council approved another $7.4 million dollar TIF project for the near east side on Washington Street, which should result in a 200 unit apartment building dubbed ‘Bakery Living’.
Councilors also passed a multi-use project at the former White Castle corporate office in Fountain Square. The site could hold more than 200 residential 200 units, and is backed by $8.3 million in TIF funds.
The city requires projects that receive TIF funding to set aside at least five percent of housing as affordable.
Council members, including Vice President Zach Adamson (D-17), discussed the need for updates on the progression of TIF projects.
“Is this working – is it doing what we hoped it would? As opposed to how successful the previous way was going,” Adamson said.
The projects are all considered transit-oriented developments, as they are on planned or existing bus rapid transit routes.
Protesters also interrupted Monday’s meeting to oppose library leadership appointments, although those appointments were not on the agenda. Many held signs which called for the removal of library board members Hope Tribble and TD Robinson. The community has been outspoken during the search for a new leader.