May 30, 2017 (FISHERS, IND.) – Mayor Scott Fadness announced plans today to invest in a 70-acre waterfront park at Geist Reservoir. The park will be developed at the last-remaining undeveloped parcel of the 1,900 acre reservoir, located approximately at 111th Street on the east side of Olio Road.
“The Geist area is one of Fishers’ most distinct assets and this park sets forth a momentum for the long term sustainability of Geist Reservoir, its residents, and our community at large,” said Mayor Scott Fadness. “In conversations with multiple residents and stakeholders, I’ve heard time and time again the argument that the long term vibrancy of Geist is a concern. Part of that involves environmental, boat traffic, and new development. My hope is that this park development helps to mitigate those concerns for residents and turn Geist into a distinct asset for all of Fishers.”
Conceptual designs of the park, to be named at a later date, show the possibilities of the park development: amphitheater, fishing dock, public beach, kayak, boardwalk, natural playscapes, and opportunities for adventure races, triathlons, paddle boarding, and more. Fishers residents will have the opportunity to be involved in the final design of the park. No motorized boat launch will be permitted in the park area.
“To have a major natural asset like we do with Geist Reservoir is a great opportunity to encourage residents to enjoy nature a little more and unplug,” said Fishers Parks and Recreation Director Tony Elliot. “By adding public access to Geist, our entire community can enjoy this wonderful natural setting and I look forward to working with the community as designs for this park start to come together. At nearly double Roy G. Holland Memorial Park, the possibilities are endless.”
The land is made up of three separate parcels, held by two owners: Irving Materials, Inc. and Marina Limited Partnership. The City of Fishers submitted an offer to the owners to purchase the land outright. Negotiations are confidential until final. Condemnation of the land is possible if an agreement cannot be reached, considering the public usage. Acquisition of the land will take several months, with final design process beginning late 2017 or early 2018.
Irving Materials Inc. (IMI) currently operates a quarry on these parcels with anticipated operations ending Summer 2018. A Planned Unit Development (PUD) was passed years ago that would allow more development with intent to add just over 100 homes.
“I hear from residents all the time that increasing boat traffic on Geist is the fastest way to reduce the recreational experience out there,” said City Councilor Pete Peterson. “This is a real opportunity to utilize Fall Creek and connect the reservoir in a natural way to some of the most beautiful areas of our city. This is a win-win situation for Geist residents. By creating this natural recreation area and reducing new development, it will ultimately lessen the added boat traffic that comes with more homes and docks.”
More information and updates can be found at playfishers.com/GeistWaterfrontPark.