CARMEL, Ind. — Carmel could soon be home to Republic Airways new headquarters, training facility and more.
A plan announced on Monday would demolish the Hamilton Crossing Centre, a mostly vacant strip mall off of West Carmel Dr. and Old Meridian St., and replace it with a $200 million set of facilities for Republic Airways.
“This is a perfect use for that and there will be other amenities that will come into this location in order to provide a location for other businesses to locate there,” said Carmel City Councilman Jeff Worrell.
He and fellow Carmel City Councilman Adam Aasan agree this plan is huge for Carmel.
“The mayor said this would be our largest employer in the city of Carmel, it is also the largest single investment by one employer since the mayor has been in office, probably in the history of Carmel,” said Aasen.
The new plan would move Republic Airways from Indianapolis to Carmel.
On top of the new training facility and headquarters, the nearby Hampton Inn would be taken over by Republic Airways, as well. The company will expand the building and use it as housing for employees coming into Carmel to train.
Worrell and Aasan said the project would also include a $50 million Tax Increment bond from Carmel.
The TIF bond would ultimately be paid for by the increased property tax revenue from the new headquarters and training facility and would not affect Carmel tax payers.
“If for some reason the assessed value does not reach the level to pay off the bond the developer is on the hook for that,” said Aasen.
The new facility would also bring 1,900 jobs to Carmel.
Republic Airways Chief Administrative Officer Matt Koscal said one-third of those jobs are already in Indianapolis, another one-third would be relocated from other Republic Airways facilities in St. Louis and Cincinnati and the last portion would be brand new jobs created by company growth.
”Another third is going to be the ancillary and support staff and other corporate growth,” said Koscal.
In addition to new jobs, Republic also brings visitors.
Annually, Koscal said more than 5,000 employees would visit the Republic Airways HQ for training.
“Everyone of our crew members must come into our training center for an annual recurrent training,” he said.
On top of that, a few thousand more visitors will come in each year who will be new hires, some of these people will stay in Carmel for as long as 60 days.
Aasen and Worrell both said this is another important benefit for Carmel.
”These are high wage earners who will be going out to eat, shopping in our stores and injecting money right into our economy,” Aasen said.
The plan is not fully agreed upon yet, the $50 million TIF bond is set to be discussed at the Carmel City Council Finance Committee meeting this Wednesday. Both Aasen and Worrell said they’ll do their due diligence in making sure this deal will work out for the city.
If the plan goes through, Republic Airways would be set to move from their current location on Purdue Rd. in the northside of Indianapolis. This is in Councilor Leroy Robinson’s district, he sent FOX59 a statement about the possible departure of Republic Airways.
“Yesterday’s announcement from Republic Airlines about the plan to move the company’s headquarters out of Indianapolis and my Council district is disappointing. However, I’m glad Republic has chosen to remain in Central Indiana and continue its relationship with the Indianapolis airport. Given that the site of the company’s new headquarters is only 8 miles from its present location, I hope Republic Airlines employees who already call Indianapolis home will continue to do so. On behalf of my District 1 constituents, my focus will be ensuring the administration and local economic development agencies leverage the opportunity to bring new corporate partners and fresh energy to the existing space. I look forward to collaborating with neighbors and stakeholders on the possibilities this change presents.”
Aasen said this should be looked at as a victory for all of Indiana.
”One city’s success is another city’s success, and we see that with the economic impact, so I really think this is something that the whole region can celebrate that we’re seeing a $200 million investment in Indiana,” Aasen said.
Demolition of the current site could begin as early as October with plans for the new training center to open late 2022 and the full headquarter to be completed in early 2023.