Controversial from the start, the Broad Ripple development was hotly debated. Much discussion also centered on whether Broad Ripple should be considered for tax increment funding. Opponents argue that TIF funds should be saved for poorer areas.
At-large Councilor Zach Adamson proposed an amendment that would have split the proposal in two and allowed the council to vote on Tarkington Park and Broad Ripple as separate issues. Republicans - and some Democrats who worried that the move would hamstring the proposal - voted down the amendment.
The proposal passed 22-7. The $15 million project will make improvements to Broad Ripple's Central Canal and fund a mixed-use development with over 100 new apartments, a Whole Foods and more parking. The Tarkington Park planned improvements include a new dog park and other infrastructure improvements.
A road improvements proposal will allot $16 million to improve roads that are still riddled with potholes after the hard winter. Councilor Aaron Freeman called it a public safety issue, a position colleagues from both sides of the aisle echoed.
"I wonder how many cars, tires, wheels, suspensions were damaged while we debated this," Councilor Brian Mahern said. "It's time to get this done."
While some councilors advocated for a more comprehensive repair strategy, the body opted to pass what several councilors called a Band-Aid approach by a vote of 25-4.
Both proposals were sent to the Mayor's Office for final approval.