People in the Harrisburg neighborhood and representatives from the city are working together to make the area a better place.
"Improve education, improve drainage, improve the beauty of the city, attract more residents. Allow the city to grow without raising the tax rate," ARC Project Managing Partner Matthew Kwatinetz says.
City officials asked residents to voice their opinions on what needs to be done in Harrisburg. Some residents are upset because the area was named an opportunity zone without a public hearing. That was done to attract business to the area, but some residents aren't sure how that will work.
"My qualm is that this is a neighborhood. Opportunity zone's encourage big business to come in. The area that should have been an opportunity zone would have been the Mills area, and not all the parcels of land in this neighborhood. There are no businesses in this neighborhood," Harrisburg resident Lori Davis says.
But other residents say the opportunity zone designation doesn't bother them. They are more concerned with the city's plan for the Sibley and King Mills and how it will affect Harrisburg.
"I think it would be very good for the neighborhood," St. Luke United Methodist Outreach Director Marsha Jones says. She added, "That's because I think that what this neighborhood needs is a collaboration with people who have skill to help our community."
Right now, city leaders are collaborating with GRU to make the project happen, but they say GRU is definitely interested in moving forward.
"They have always been very receptive, but now we have word that they absolutely want to expand into the downtown area. What that means, is again subject to planning and investigation, but we feel that is a huge success right now," Kwatinetz says.
The Board of Regents will have to approve the Mills Campus project before the city can move forward with it.
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