SCHERERVILLE | The new year brings new development to Schererville and the resurrection of an old idea.
The town will revisit the possibility of opening a community center, Town Manager Bob Volkmann said.
Discussions about a Schererville recreation facility started in 2004, but cost estimates came in too high, and the project was put on the back burner. Now, a scaled-down version will be considered for construction in Sherwood Park.
It would house parks department offices and some community meeting space. The town has a half-million-dollar grant to help cover some of the costs, Volkmann said.
Construction of a fire station on the west side of town also is still being discussed. But, finding the money to staff it is an obstacle, Town Council President Tom Schmitt said.
Schererville officials expect to see a boost in commercial development this year. It will be guided by a zoning ordinance that was adopted at the end of last year, meaning new commercial and residential construction will have new standards, Volkmann said.
Construction is under way on the first assisted living facility in town. The site near the southeast corner of U.S. 41 and Austin Avenue is expected to spur related businesses on four nearby lots, Volkmann said.
JAK's Warehouse, an indoor recreational center featuring go-karts, laser tag, games and more, is expected to open inside the former Blade 'n' Skate in the Omni 41 building, 221 U.S. 41.
Home improvement store Menards has plans to move three blocks south from its existing location at 1000 U.S. 41, but a construction timeline has not been finalized, Volkmann said.
Construction is under way for Toyota, which expects to open on U.S. 41, south of the old Krispy Kreme and east of Plum Creek subdivision.
Many projects from 2011 and earlier are carrying over into this year, including the watershed program s designed to alleviate flooding problems.
Parks projects will carry over as well.
The design for the next leg of the Pennsy Trail, from Main Street to 213th Street, will be started, said John Novacich, parks superintendent.
A new playground will be built in Elm Ridge Park, along with ADA-accessible routes. And parks officials will focus on finding grant opportunities for developing the 83-acre Teibel Nature Preserve, near Stonebridge subdivision and Village Cesare.
Development continues on the Perry Ferrini Dog Park, named after a late councilman who supported the need for a dog park in town.
And, the department will start updating its five-year parks and recreation master plan, which expires at the end of this year. The draft is due in early 2013, Novacich said.