LEBANON, Ind. (WISH) — Boone County commissioners have hired an urban-planning company to assist them in preparations for construction of an Eli Lilly and Co. manufacturing facility, a marketing consultancy announced Wednesday.
The Indianapolis-headquartered pharmaceutical company plans to invest $2.1 billion to develop two facilities in the state’s proposed Boone County Innovation District and create up to 500 new jobs.
The city government of Lebanon on Monday night is expected to grow by 1,450 acres through a voluntary annexation of property for the facility, News 8 has reported. Lilly is in negotiations with Indiana Economic Development Corp. to purchase 600 acres for its manufacturing facility. The state is paying $55,000 and higher per accre for the property.
The proposed development will eventually consume 7,000 acres in Boone County, News 8 has reported.
For Boone County officials, the Indianapolis-based urban-planning company of Rundell Ernstberger Associates will create a planned-unit development ordinance for the project. The company also may provide an update to the county’s road map for transportation and future developments, according to a news release that Fishers-based marketing consultancy Coverdale Consulting issued Wednesday.
The commissioners and Rundell Ernstberger Associates also will meet with community members, school districts’ representatives, and leaders public safety agencies and municipalities about the project, the release says.
The release did not say how much the county government will pay Rundell Ernstberger Associates for its services.
The development was initially cloaked in secrecy. News 8 has reported landowners got offers to sell their land, but had little information on who was buying and for what reason.
“The Commissioners believe hiring a professional outside firm is the best way to protect and promote the interests of our citizens, particularly those affected in the unincorporated areas. The proposed development needs to be fully vetted, and we also need to ensure we are listening to stakeholders and landowners in the community.”
Jeff Wolfe, president of Boone County Commissioners
“We have heard constituents’ concerns about the environmental impacts of this proposed development. Aspects of the PUD (planned-unit development) ordinance will specifically address environmental sustainability, preservation, and developmental flexibility. Additionally, the PUD will focus on compatibility with existing public amenities.”
Tom Santelli, Boone County commissioner