HOBART | A proposed medical/office center is closer to obtaining tax abatement from the city.
The City Council on Wednesday unanimously decided to designate property at 6188 Marcella Blvd. as an economic revitalization area.
City Attorney Anthony DeBonis said it's the first of two steps necessary to approve a tax abatement request for the $2.2 million project.
The request now moves to a public hearing set for June 19. The council asked a representative for the proposed center to be prepared to provide additional details about the project during that meeting.
If the plans advance, a 28,000-square-foot medical/office building, which would be called Hobart Square, would be constructed on 2.2 acres on Marcella Boulevard.
City officials initially had concerns about possible traffic problems associated with the project. On Wednesday, council President Jerry Herzog said those issues have been addressed.
During a council meeting earlier this month, Merrillville attorney J.J. Stankiewicz said his clients, doctors now renting space in Hobart, are seeking the tax abatement to help defray the high cost of the underground stormwater retention system that will be required at the site.
At that meeting, Stankiewicz indicated there initially would be 15 doctors at the clinic, but that number eventually would increase to 65.
Other businesses that would occupy the building might include a bank and drive-up-type restaurant.
There also are plans for a second phase across the street from the initial medical center, Stankiewicz said.