Tonight, I'll be making my regular appearance on the JohnnyStir Show on IndianaTalks.com, but we're going to shake things up a bit. Over the weekend, I sat down with Councillor John Barth (D-At Large). Barth was elected in 2011 where Democratic candidates swept the At-Large seats and regained a majority on the Indianapolis-Marion County City-County Council. He currently serves as Vice-President of the council.
Barth was involved in creating what is known as the Midtown TIF, which roughly runs from 30th and Central and 38th and Illinois and also encompasses the more northern areas of Broad Ripple and Butler-Tarkington as well as a good chunk of land between all the areas. One of the first major developments requesting use of tax increment financing is a proposed development to replace the abandoned Shell site in Broad Ripple with a mixed-use retail and residential complex. It is speculated that the retail will be fairly large and will be a single renter, likely a Whole Foods.
Barth has come out in opposition to the development mainly due to the use of TIF funding to finance it, saying that there are areas within the TIF that need development more than Broad Ripple does. Proponents of the development say there won't be funding for future TIF developments if this project doesn't get going first. The developer of the mixed-use complex has submitted some changes to the design and zoning variances they've been seeking, so we'll see if that has changed Barth's view.
We also touched on panhandling and how long that ordinance will take to go through the process, budget hearings in the era of Senate Enrolled Act 621, and we briefly talked about the violence that broke out downtown after the fireworks show.
The show starts tonight at 9:00pm. You can listen live by clicking on the Indiana Talks button on the upper right hand corner of this blog. If you have an Apple or Android device, go to the Apple Store or Google Play Store and look for the "Live 365" app. Download it and look for Indiana Talks.
My segment should begin approximately at 9:40pm.