“Tonight is probably the last step in really being ready” to start constructing a shell building in Batesville, consultant Greg Martz of GM Development, New Castle, told the Batesville Redevelopment Commission May 28. On May 12, the Batesville City Council unanimously voted in favor of the structure. BRC President Andy Saner said, “It was great to get that level of support behind the project.”
According to Martz, “My loan is completely approved … The design is underway.” Topographic surveys are finished and soil tests showed there’s no issue with that. A building rendering should be done by June 6.
The structure’s site – about 7 acres of 73 contained in the vacant industrial park – will be on the east side of Merkel Road and large enough to allow for a 50,000-square-foot expansion if needed. The entrance will be 200 yards south of Lammers Pike.
Martz reported he’s already started marketing the property. “The Web site is underway, so we’re in high gear. Since it’s on redevelopment land, we need (your) permission to construct the project on your land.” Once permission is granted, one more survey needs to be completed before state officials review the plans, probably in late August. “We’ll be moving dirt immediately after that.”
Saner said the project is estimated to cost around $2.3 million, which includes the building, architect and engineering fees and added infrastructure “for the greater good of the entire (industrial) park.”
Franklin leaders have received “an immense amount of interest” in its available 50,000-square-foot building that’s about a year old. “They are not using a commercial real estate broker,” and Batesville will be, Saner noted. When he has been questioned by citizens about needing so many consultants, the president answered, “‘We’ve never done this before and I’d like to have some experts guide us this first time.’”