Q&A Regarding Lawrence CDC

For answers to FAQ about Lawrence CDC, see below.

Q1.  What is Lawrence CDC’s history and role in redevelopment in Lawrence?

Lawrence CDC was established as “Lawrence/Fort Harrison Development Corporation” in 1996.  It is an Indiana not-for-profit corporation with IRS 501c3 tax-exempt status.  The Lawrence CDC name was adopted later and registered with the Indiana Secretary of State.  The CDC was created by the City of Lawrence and Fort Harrison Reuse Authority to facilitate development and redevelopment, to promote positive development and redevelopment, and to promote the creation of safe and decent affordable housing in Lawrence and the former Fort Harrison.

The CDC may act as developer, as it did in its major developments on Fort Harrison. Benjamin Square (the housing development at 56th & Franklin) and the Ivy Tech building were CDC developments.  Currently the CDC owns several vacant lots in Lawrence and property on Franklin Road that is held for future redevelopment.

The CDC also acts as advocate for positive development and property improvement, working with developers and property owners.  The CDC funded startup of the Lawrence Redevelopment Commission (the Pendleton Pike/Franklin Road redevelopment area).  In 2011, the CDC co-founded and has been the major sponsor of the Lawrence Art Center on Franklin Road.  In 2013, the Lawrence Redevelopment Commission established a Commercial Façade and Property Improvement Fund, administered and promoted by the CDC.

The CDC has access to, or preference in obtaining, some kinds of low-cost capital and development funding that are not typically available to for-profit developers.  The CDC has standing under Indiana law to receive grants and loans for redevelopment from the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority, the City of Lawrence, the Lawrence Redevelopment Commission, and the Fort Harrison Reuse Authority.  This capacity is important in the case of buildings that have a gap between cost of rehabilitation and eventual property value.

The CDC in general will accept lower financial returns and higher risk than market-driven developers, which adds to its usefulness in difficult scenarios where there are non-financial benefits to redevelopment.

Q2.  Who controls Lawrence CDC?

Lawrence CDC directors originally were appointed by Lawrence city government and FHRA, but that is no longer the case. The bylaws have evolved over the years, and the organization is now governed by a self-electing board with term limits.  At least six board members are required to be residents of the City of Lawrence and may not be elected officials.  The remaining three directors may work full time in Lawrence, own real property in Lawrence, or live in that part of Lawrence Township outside the City of Lawrence.  A list of directors may be found on the website at www.lawrencecdc.org. Current directors live in various Lawrence neighborhoods.

Lawrence CDC has one paid staff member, its executive director.  Directors serve voluntarily and without pay.  Independent contractors handle property maintenance, accounting, and IT/web development.

Q3.  Is Lawrence CDC part of City government?

No.  As with most other community development organizations in Marion County, Lawrence CDC is independent of government and Lawrence’s two redevelopment districts.  The CDC sometimes cooperates with those entities in planning or executing programs and developments, as described above.

 

 

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About Lawrence CDC
A catalyst for improving quality of life for our City and Township through community participation and collaborative partnerships.

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