More details have been revealed about the new community center planned for North Judson. A public hearing was held Monday to give residents the chance to offer input, as well as learn more about the project.
During the meeting, project organizer Bill Crase said he envisions a community center that can be used for many different types of events and activities. “Not only can it be used for the rental of weddings, birthdays, and stuff like that, but we’re going to try to plan for senior citizen functions there as well, and other things along that line for the community to actually use this facility,” he said. “We want it to be a true community center.” The new building would also be available for use as an emergency shelter, in the case of severe weather or lengthy power outages.
Crase says they plan to build the new facility on donated land, “At this time, the projected location would be to the north of the fire station. It would be on the railroad bed back there north of the fire station.”
The Town of North Judson is collaborating with Wayne Township in an effort to get grant funding from the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs. Kankakee-Iroquois Regional Planning Commission Executive Director Edwin Buswell was also at the meeting to explain how the funding process will work. “Total project cost right now is estimated at $830,000 but that is not a set number yet,” he said. “That’s pretty much the high end of the estimate. It could come down easily. So it has a $430,000 local match that will come from the town, the township, and in-kind donations. A letter of intent is due April 8 and then the application is due June 10 and we’ll hear results, I think, in probably August.”
Crase believes the town’s chances of getting a grant are good, but says organizers are also coming up with some alternate plans in case funding falls through. One idea is to use some of the North Judson-San Pierre School Corporation’s property, at a time when school officials are looking to downsize the facilities to match the decline in the number of students.
More public hearings are expected to be held as the grant application process moves forward.