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Jasper, IN 47547-0029
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Downtown



"Jasper is the gem of Indiana and Downtown Jasper is the setting."
- Mayor Terry Seitz

Local. Vibrant. Evolving.

These terms describe Jasper's downtown which emphasizes hometown ownership, deep roots and an eagerness for new ideas and methods. Downtown Jasper encompasses an area bound by Central Green on the west to the Patoka River on the east; from the Schnitzelbank German Restaurant through the Riverfront on the south to the Jasper Public Library on the north.

Within this area lies our civic institutions - the Dubois County Courthouse on the Square, Jasper City Hall and our United States Post Office.  It is truly a mixed use environment with the oldest office furniture plant in the nation, Jasper Desk Company, operating in proximity to the Jasper Police and Fire Departments with retail stores nearby.

Over the last 15 years, our city has benefited from major investments in downtown - both private and public - and from citizen involved from groups such as Redevelop Old Jasper Action Coalition (ROJAC), Patoka 2000, the Greater Downtown Jasper Business Association and the Jasper Chamber of Commerce.  Together, these organizations and their volunteers have made this important part of Jasper an ever-changing destination for wellness, shopping and entertainment.  These efforts have led to the new City Mill, a built-to-scale Train Depot, the Jasper Riverwalk and Dave Buehler Plaza and the Spirit of Jasper Luxury Excursion Train.

In 2013, the City of Jasper commissioned CityVisions of Louisville, KY to spearhead its first Downtown Jasper/Riverfront Master Plan.  Seven goals were adopted:

  • CRITICAL MASS: Bring more vitality to downtown with more activities and special events.
  • DEVELOPMENT: Repurpose the physical assets that the city already has and highlight its authenticity.
  • CONNECTIVITY: Physically and programmatically connect the city's nodes of activity and don't allow them to compete with one another.  A city-wide system of connectivity is needed.  
  • ENGAGEMENT: Capture the public's imagination and rally people behind a "vision" for the downtown.  Establish a community conversation around common audiences (school, arts, county club, riverfront and downtown).
  • SMALL BUSINESS: Increase the diversity of businesses in the downtown core and engage the emerging young business leaders and entrepreneurs who are the next generation.  
  • ART: Capitalize on cultural tourism around the arts and invest in a robust public art program that brings people downtown and enlivens the street.
  • SPORTS: Take advantage of the strong reputation that Jasper has in holding and promoting athletics and competitions

The Downtown/Riverfront Master Plan had led to a significant number of major redevelopment projects to be announced, including several incorporating housing which is called for in the county's housing study commissioned by Dubois Strong:

Dubois County Courthouse Square Project

Through the direction and funding by the Jasper Common Council, the Jasper Redevelopment Commission has hired Rundell Ernstberger as design engineers for revitalization of the Dubois County Courthouse Square.  This endeavor would entail repair of failing stormwater issues, replacement of old water lines and reworking the appearance of the surface after infrastructure work is completed.

River Centre

Boxer Girl LLC of Indianapolis has entered into an option for the old Jasper Cabinet Company property along the Patoka River.  This property has been vacant for more than a decade while millions of dollars of redevelopment has occurred nearby.  In October, 2015, concepts were unveiled for a $30 million investment for mixed use development to include market rate residences, corporate or retail space and a separate 80-100 unit hotel.

Jasper Lofts Phase 1

Developer Miller-Valentine of Ohio has received Indiana state tax credits and support from the Jasper City Council to construct 67 workforce housing units in the former vacant JOFCO plant at 13th & Mill. Construction is underway.  This is in addition to construction of private business space for the building's owners, Cash-Waggoner.

Jasper Lofts Phase 2

The council has offered support of Miller-Valentine's application for 44 more workforce housing units in the JOFCO building pending state approval of tax credits which are expected to be resubmitted later this year.

Vine Street Lofts

Across Vine Street at the former Jasper Wood Products/Monster Recycling site, Miller-Valentine has received council support and state tax credits for a 60-unit senior living complex.

The Jasper Cultural Center

The City of Jasper, its Community Arts Commission and the Jasper Public Library Board are engaged in redeveloping the Hoosier Desk site at 3rd & Mill into the Jasper Cultural Center - a combined arts, library and gathering place for residents and visitors. The project received nearly $3,500,000 in state tax credits for reuse of a former industrial site and City Properties Group of Louisville, KY was selected by both boards to be the private developer on the project.

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