Fishers Mayor Scott Fadness spoke today at his 2018 State of the City address to a sold-out audience at the OneZone Chamber of Commerce’s March Luncheon. The speech highlighted key quality of life efforts already underway and unveiled two new initiatives.
“We anticipate a strong year for economic development so this year’s State of the City was a chance to take a step back to focus singularly on quality-of-life projects,” said Mayor Scott Fadness.
Mayor Fadness announced the city’s newest park addition: Fishers Agri Park, which will be operated by Brandywine Creek Farms. This new park will provide a unique opportunity for residents to interact and learn from the many facets of agriculture. The Fishers Agri Park is a partnership between the city and Brandywine Creek Farms, a local nonprofit organization whose mission it is to help educate and inspire individuals of all ages and help meet the needs of those who are food insecure.
The 32-acre park, located in the southeastern quadrant of 113th Street and Florida Road, will feature areas for educational programming, livestock grazing, interactive experiences, and crop production. Fishers Agri Park will dedicate a portion of its harvest to the Good Samaritan Network of Hamilton County and local food banks. It will also be part of the network of Brandywine Creek Farms, which serve military veterans and at-risk youth through programming. Fishers Agri Park will open late spring 2018 for its inaugural season. More information can be found here.
Mayor Fadness was joined on stage by leaders Norman Burns, CEO of Conner Prairie and Dr. Allan Bourff, HSE Schools Superintendent to announce a new initiative: Fishers First, a citywide campus collaboration between the City of Fishers, Hamilton Southeastern Schools (HSES), and Conner Prairie. The Fishers First collaboration between the three entities began with a conversation around long term sustainability of Fishers which led to the goal of: Creating a world-class educational experience for Fishers students that would combine experiential learning with innovation, collaboration, and new experiences.
“These projects will make a difference for the long-term sustainability in Fishers for generations to come. Whether it’s the Fishers Agri Park which pays homage to Fishers’ history where kids can interact and have hands-on learning experiences at a working farm or the new citywide classroom initiative, we’ll be able to connect areas of our community in new ways,” said Mayor Fadness.
From community field trips to learn about the geology behind patching potholes to experiencing ecology through already-established programs such as Fishers Parks and Recreation’s “Nature First,” students of all ages will have the opportunity to work alongside the Conner Prairie, the City of Fishers, and local businesses to deepen their knowledge of standards taught inside the classroom.
“We are excited about our collaboration with the city of Fishers and Hamilton Southeastern schools to help establish a citywide campus for the future,” said Conner Prairie President and CEO Norman Burns. “We are fortunate to have a world class city, educational system and interactive learning museum in one distinct location whose combined resources will ensure an unmatched opportunity for Fisher’s children.”
Mayor Fadness said the achievements of Fishers are not possible without the exceptional team of Fishers employees who work every day for our community. Mayor Fadness recognized city staff who have contributed above and beyond their duties over the past year. Recognition was given to Cici Conover, HR Director, as she celebrates retirement after 18 years with the City of Fishers; Fishers Police Department’s Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) unit for their service and dedication to working collaboratively with local, state and federal agencies on over 80 cases in 2017 serving over 30 subpoenias and completing 24 arrests, protecting our community and saving child victims; the Economic Development team for a record breaking 2017 with over 2100 jobs and $64.5 M in capital investment announced by companies growing in Fishers; and Jeff Hill for his traffic mitigation plan during the Portillo’s-TopGolf-IKEA grand openings in fall 2017.
“To be able to bring our great community to our students through the collaboration of HSE Schools and Connor Prairie is an innovative approach not seen in many cities. I anticipate these projects having just as much impact as the traditional economic development investments that companies continue to make in Fishers,” said Mayor Fadness.
Guests also received updates on key quality of life initiatives announced previously, including Geist Waterfront Park, Nickel Plate District Amphitheater project, and Spark!Fishers.
More details about all initiatives introduced at the State of the City will be distributed as they become established.