White River Regional Opportunity Initiative
Central Indiana’s READI collaboration.
The White River Regional Opportunity Initiative (WR-ROI) Partnership consists of representatives from three counties – Hamilton, Madison, and Marion – and eight communities: Anderson, Carmel, Fishers, Indianapolis, McCordsville, Noblesville, Westfield, and Zionsville within a total of five counties (Boone, Hamilton, Hancock, Madison, and Marion). The Partnership prepared a Regional Development Plan (RDP) for READI that details a cohesive regional vision, goals, and projects or programs related to economic development within the White River Region. Our region is one of over a dozen competing for a $50M share of this $500M initiative.
About the READI Grant
READI builds on the framework and successes of the Indiana Regional Cities Initiative and the 21st Century Talent Initiative, encouraging neighboring communities across the state to work collaboratively to develop a bold vision for their future that, when implemented, will attract, develop and retain talent in Indiana. Regions will develop data-driven, actionable and sustainable development plans that outline strategies focused on improving the quality of place, quality of life and quality of opportunity within their communities.
The READI Grant seeks to achieve the following outcomes in participating regions:
- Increased per capita income at a rate that meets or exceeds the national average
- Increased share of population of prime working age
- Increased rate of educational attainment
- Increased property values statewide
- Improved health outcome
All READI Project submissions should demonstrate ability to achieve one or more of those outcomes over the next 5-10 years. More information on READI can be found HERE.
The White River ROI’s Priorities
The White River ROI will be guided by goals developed in the White River Vision Plan completed in 2019. The Vision Plan’s Guiding Principles are organized around equity, environment, and economy. READI Project and Program submissions are guided by these principles as well.
The White River ROI’s Plan
The Regional Development Plan for the White River Regional Opportunity Initiative represents a transformational opportunity to support population growth, talent attraction and retention, and smart economic development in the region. Created by regional communities, anchor institutions, leading organizations, and influential stakeholders, all of whom are united in their pursuit of opportunities for economic, population, and wage growth that a clean, healthy, scenic White River corridor can bring.
Home to almost 1.5 million people, the WR-ROI Region has grown significantly over the last ten years, gaining 10% population from 2010 to 2020 (compared to Indiana’s 4.2%). The WR-ROI seeks to continue that trend, while making appropriate investments in physical and social infrastructure to ensure new and long term residents have what they need to thrive, and developing the White River into a world-class attraction that serves Hoosiers and tourists alike for generations to come. This includes enhancing quality of place, quality of life and wellbeing, environmental health, and sustainability; boosting support for business, entrepreneurship, and innovation activity; training and education initiatives to prepare the workforce for future economic trends; and equitable development projects that ensure the WR-ROI Region is an attractive place where all residents benefit from growing economic opportunity in the coming decades.
The White River ROI’s Projects
This interactive map displays the WR-ROI project locations and their proximity to the White River, larger watershed, and regional trail network.