Goshen is breaking ground on a type of construction it has never done before—high-density urban residences.
In Early October, Goshen officials voted to approve a contract with Matthews LLC to half of an eight acre plot of land along the Millrace Canal. Matthews, a well-known developer in South Bend is responsible for higher end properties in the East Race neighborhood and near the University of Notre Dame campus.
Matthews entered a proposal after Goshen officials engaged his company in a dialogue about urban expansion and development. David Matthews said it started as giving advice but led to a love affair for the tight-knit Goshen community.
“The project in Goshen has a nice view of the channel and of the park on the other side of the channel,” said Matthews, “So we've done some work to see what those views would look like, and it seemed like a good fit for the first new, urban project in downtown Goshen.
Director of community development in Goshen, Mark Brinson said Matthews LLC purchased the space for about one dollar. In exchange, Brinson said the developer promised to invest a sizable amount of resources to improve the property.
Anywhere from four to ten single-level flats and 15 to 25 storied town houses will be built, ranging from 1,200 to 6,000 square feet. There are already people interested in purchasing the future homes. Brinson said a consensus was reached within the community to add groundbreaking high-density, higher-end housing.
Following the South Bend model, Goshen hopes to engage local entrepreneurs in the expansion of downtown residences as well.
“It's more attractive to young people, but it creates more interconnectedness. With a higher population density it's easier to interact with your neighbors because you have more of them,” Matthews explained.
In addition to the flats and town homes, the proposal calls for a public park—to be maintained by the city—located in between the canal and the new residences.
The other half of the eight acre property is still under negotiation with developer Millrace Neighborhood. Brinson said that contract will likely be finalized sometime next month and will involve the construction of single-unit housing with a slightly different style.