In 2005, the City of East Chicago began work on the comprehensive revitalization of its Indiana harbor Community. In 2006, The Community Builders, Incorporated, a nonprofit organization and national expert on comprehensive neighborhood revitalization, partnered with the City to plan and implement a series of projects which will collectively revitalize Indiana Harbor and its adjacent shoreline. This comprehensive approach and its related projects are now known as the North harbor Initiative.
As this work began, it quickly became clear that reconnecting the community to a redeveloped, regionally accessible shoreline would lead to significant improvement in the quality of life and economic benefits. As a result, the City of East Chicago partnered with the City of Gary to submit a joint Regional Development Authority (RDA) application, requesting due diligence and planning funds to create the South Shore lakefront Plan.
On the 25th day or March, 2008 the City of East Chicago, Department of Redevelopment and the Northwest Indiana Regional Development Authority entered into a Grant Agreement for a sum not to exceed $3,900,000 to be used in accordance with the scope and intent for funding and project that entails site assembly, remediation and preparation of up to 23 acres within the City of East Chicago’s shoreline park gateway and North Harbor community gateway redevelopment areas.
This project provides the necessary foundation from upon which both the South Shore lakefront Revitalization and Implementation Strategy’s master plan will be implemented. The project will increase public access and open space at the lakefront in accordance with the vision of the Marquette gateway.