Visclosky/RDA Plan Would Radically Transform Munster Creating “Urban Wall” Along Ridge Road

Ridge Road station area plan would be carried out in 3 phases and cost over $488M. In total, RDA plans for Hammond and Munster stations would cost $2.4B and would come from a mix of tax incentives, government sources and private developers. RDA is currently pursuing a $5B public-private partnership with consulting through KPMG.

Under the Visclosky/RDA plan, the Ridge Road corridor in Munster would be transformed into an urban wall” Photo source RDA Comprehensive Strategic Plan 2016 page 60

February 7, 2017-The Northwest Indiana Regional Development Authority (RDA), an unelected body created by Congressman Pete Visclosky and former Governor Mitch Daniels, has released plans to radically transform the Town of Munster. The plan is a part of the “Livable Communities” initiative undertaken by the Northwest Indiana Regional Planning Commission-a federal metropolitan planning organization. Residents who have taken the time to research the issue spoke at last night’s Town Council meeting, expressing displeasure with the plan and concern for the future of their community. Many residents are still unaware of the radical nature of the plan which will be carried out in three phases and cost over $488M.

Here is how the RDA Plan describes the plan:

“The station at Munster Ridge Road will see an overall increase in density and character. The Manor Avenue
and Ridge Road intersection to the northeast, southwest, and southeast will upgrade to a mixeduse node with a variety of retail and housing. Existing uses within half a mile of the station along the Ridge Road corridor will be supported and enhanced with lower density mixed-use and commercial uses, and are intended to form a streetwall to create a more urban environment. An area of parcels acquired by the City along Manor Ave north of Ridge Rd will
serve as an open space and recreation area, with the intention of redeveloping into extra parking if deemed necessary in the future. Proposed residential units are limited to a maximum of 40 units per acre and should infill the area between the new track and Manor Avenue.

The station will be supported by a large surface lot with increased access from Briar and South Streets. A trail along the existing rail corridor will be taken out and rebuilt along the new West Lake Corridor to extend access to the station via non-vehicular modes of transportation. Overall the area will feature a higher density than existing uses; a vibrant community that caters to a variety of users and uses, promoting a bustling TOD area, and supporting Munster’s local economy.”

You can click the images below for the complete plan for the Munster Ridge Road Station. These are converted directly from the RDA Comprehensive Strategic Plan 2016 pages 82-85

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