The City of Crawfordsville, Indiana

Small City... Big Possibilities

August Stellar Advisory Meeting Update

Aug. 20, 2018

On Aug. 20, members of the Mayor’s Stellar Advisory Committee met for its monthly meeting. This month’s meeting took place at Fusion 54. Mayor Barton noted that the committee would continue to schedule meetings at 10 a.m. on the third Monday of each month. The meetings will now meet in the new Fusion 54 Building. Next month’s meeting is scheduled for Monday Sept. 17.



Ground was broken for Pike Place on April 5. Work began on the site on June 12. Dale Petrie said so far, there have not been any obstacles and the project is on schedule.

A good part of the work has been completed. The sidewalk, curbs and foundations are down. The stage is pretty much completed except for the stage cover that will be arriving in about a month or so. The restrooms are completed with the exception of the roof. The sprinkler system is in.

Pike Street from the Library parking lot to South Washington Street has been closed and will remain closed until the project is completed. The Farmer’s Market has been moved to the First Christian Church parking lot for the rest of the season.

Plans call for the work to be completed on the eastern part of Pike Street before moving to the western part of the street near the Pentecostal Church. 

All work is expected to be completed near or on Nov. 1

The building is pretty much open for business. There will be a soft opening for the building on Aug. 27 with the official Grand Opening scheduled to take place from 4 to 6 p.m. Sept. 17.

As of the time of this meeting there was an extensive punch list remaining to do. In addition, there were still some work to be done on the door security, work to be down for an ADA front door and the rest of the furniture was scheduled arrive beginning the week of Aug. 27.

A tour of the completed building took place after the meeting and everyone in attendance was impressed with the quality of work.

The Visitors Bureau will occupy the set of offices on the first floor, while the second floor will be the space set aside for the co-working space. Wabash’s CIBE, WDPD, and Collaborative Performance Theater will occupy the third floor.  The Chamber of Commerce, Economic Development, Main Street, and Leadership Academy will all have offices on the fourth floor along with meeting, training, storage, and display space.

The membership and sponsorship fees and structures have been released. Fusion 54 now has a Website (, and a Twitter account (@Fusion54Cville).

The building has already been used for a number of meetings and catered dinners including one with a group who was in town for a site visit.


Plenty of work has taken place at the Trailhead Park since the ground-breaking ceremony that took place on April 5.

Most of the concrete work is done. The front parking lot has been milled. The milling left am unsatisfactory subsurface for paving so that part of the project has been stalled until a solution is found. Landscaping is on hold for a while as the company scheduled to do that backed out and the contractor is trying to find another company to complete that work. Rhoads Construction has been brought in to work on the parking lot as they were involved with the original parking lot and bring past history of potential problems.

The park has officially been named the Philip Q. Michal Trailhead Park in memory of Dr. Michal who as Mayor of Crawfordsville initiated the first rail trail.  When construction is completed an official dedication in the former’s mayor’s name will be held.

The front part of the property will continue be a parking space for approximately 45 cars.

The back half of the property will be turned into a green space. A shelter type building will be placed in the middle of the property separating the parking lot and the green space.  American Legion Post 72 has donated a flag pole to be erected in the park.

Several meetings have taken place with INDOT regarding the Downtown Trail and those discussions have gone well. This will likely be the last project completed because of its complexity and scope.

The project is ready to proceed and the City has asked for funding to be moved up to 2018 by INDOT. That request was denied so the project is scheduled to begin in July 2019.

The Downtown Trail has been separated into in two phases. Phase I will be beginning at the railroad tracks on South Grant and head north to Wabash, then east to Walnut Street then north to Main Street

The Phase I part of the project is moving forward and the designs are complete. The Mayor also said that they have met with all the property owners along the way and they all seem to be on board.

The trail will be 10 feet wide and will be on the east side of Grant and Walnut streets and will end at Main Street for this phase. This project is actually running a little ahead of schedule as INDOT funding will not be available until July of 2019.

This project is being developed carefully as it is critical to the health and future of downtown commerce.  If done correctly, this will further enhance the Wabash and downtown Crawfordsville connection. The goal is to allow for recreation while having a positive impact on the businesses in the area.


Mayor Barton has announced he has engaged  Jim Rice with HWC to spear-head this project. He will be handling the bulk of the negotiations with CSX and LSC Communications from this point forward.

Mayor Barton said an off-load site for LSC Communications has been found. Should this site be accepted by all the parties involved, action could move forward quickly.

Rice said he was concentrating his talks with CSX at this time and wants to have all the details hammered out on their end before talking further with LSC officials.

A local firm, B & L Engineering has been brought in to help with the offloading facility that is part of this project. Once this plans are agreed upon CSX appears to be ready to eliminate the line as soon as possible.

The shift to try to fund this trail using private funding sources is still on-going. Mayor Barton said a couple of potential donors have been found and talk with them are on-going. A non-profit group will be created to help with funding this project as well as several other Park and Recreation related projects such as a possible Dog Park. They would be used to help secure grants for the Big 4 Trail and other park/recreational projects in the future. The objective of this project is to tie the existing Sugar Creek Trail and Downtown trails to the site of the Fusion 54 building and to Crawfordsville Middle School. 


Ownership of this property was been transferred back to the County. In turn, they have transferred ownership to Jon Anderson AP Development.

The plans still call for 50 to 60 hotel rooms and 10 apartments on the upper floors and commercial space on the first floor  .



Work has now been completed on the first three houses – 500 Whitlock, 408 Canby and 1009 S. Grant. The final inspections were completed at those three houses on June 16.

The initial inspections have taken place at four more houses and work should begin on those homes very soon.

A total of 15 houses have been inspected and those have been submitted to the state for approval. The contracts have been signed and the work is on-going. The contractors will have 12 months to complete the work on the houses. Each houses can have up to $20,000 in repairs and upgrades at no cost to the homeowner.

The project is also looking to secure three more homes within the next month. Two are in the inspection process and the last one will not be chosen until all the work is done and we can see how much money there remains for the final house.


The Concord Road construction project has begun work according to Scott Hesler. In addition, the Sugar Creek Trail project construction should take place this summer beginning in July.


The Mayor announced that everyone can keep up-to-date on the Stellar projects in a couple of ways.

The first is on the City’s website ( where a button has been placed on the left side of the home page. It has the overall Stellar proposal and will be where residents can go for updated information as the City moves though the Stellar process. Recently added is a quarterly report that the City does when it meets with all the state agencies involved. This includes a timetable and some updated plans on some of the projects.

In addition, there will be an update in the local newspapers every quarter. The Mayor said he would be supplying an update to the local media soon as he feels it is important to keep the public up-to-date. He said the response to his newspaper columns has been very positive.

Also, the city has begun producing a series of videos update everyone on the different projects.  The first video featured the Mayor explaining the purpose and design of Fusion 54.  That video is now available on the city’s web page and on social media.  A second video covering the downtown parks is being edited and should be released very soon.

The next meeting of the Stellar Advisory Committee will take place at 10 a.m. Sept. 17, 2018 at the Fusion 54 Building.