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Project center of town hall meeting

My Opinion
Ross Schulz, Staff Writer

Town hall gatherings became the popular event to have during the last couple of major political campaign seasons, in 2008 and 2010, with many politicians using the venue to advance their causes with an intimate, local, back-and-forth session with the general public. Others hurt their campaigns by opening themselves up to criticism (just ask Baron Hill how his town hall experience went).
Tomorrow night (Thursday), at 6, there will be a town hall meeting in downtown Corydon, at the Wright Interpretive Center (formerly the Corydon Presbyterian Church), to present and discuss the hotel and convention center project planned for the old Keller Manufacturing Co. property, also in downtown Corydon.
For anyone interested in the project, the event, sponsored by Main Street Corydon and the Harrison County Convention & Visitors Bureau, should present a perfect avenue to express opinions or to ask questions about the proposed project.
In the end, it appears it will be the county commissioners and councilmen, who represent all of us in the community, who will have the final say on whether the project will forward or not. It doesn’t take too much time around the commissioners and councilmen to learn that they take comments from the public very seriously in their decision-making process.
The project has been presented and discussed in both a commissioners and council meeting, but this will mark the first time for a public forum about the project. Many people, understandably so, are reluctant to sit through a council or commissioners meeting to hear a certain presentation with no timetable for when it will begin.
Also, any project that may receive county backing that has a $28 million price tag should spark the interest of the general public. However, according to studies conducted, almost that much money could be recouped in only a couple of years because of the center’s success. The complex could create roughly 300 jobs as well, according to the study.
The plan includes a 150-room, 75,000-square-foot hotel and a 23,000-square-foot conference center. The design includes a large, outdoor lawn area along Indian Creek, a ballroom and meeting rooms. Besides for conferences, the facility would be a great place for weddings, keeping many couples ‘ and their money ‘ in Harrison County rather than them renting large halls like the Calumet Club in New Albany and Huber’s Plantation Hall in Starlight.
Project representatives have not requested any funding for the project from the county, but said they intend to in the near future.
There will be a brief presentation followed by an open-forum discussion about the project and information about how to get involved.
Go with an open mind to hear the possibilities of what such an economic development project could do for Harrison County.