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Greensburg water squabble nearing an end.

May 3, 2007

Development near the Honda Motor Co. car assembly plant under construction near Greensburg might go forward, now that the city and Decatur County Rural Water system have reached an agreement to supply water to the area.

Signatures are about all that remain to ice the agreement, according to the Greensburg Daily News. The parties didn’t release details.

Since the Japanese automaker announced in June that it had chosen the city between Indianapolis and Greensburg for the plant, the state has viewed the area as a magnet for development ranging from housing to auto parts plants.

However, development was thrown into limbo because of a dispute over which party would control water lines in the development area. Local developers blasted the city and water district for holding up hotels and other projects.

Decatur County Rural Water Corp., the water district that serves the development area, relies on water supplied by the city and needed additional supply to support new development.

But Greensburg wouldn’t supply the additional water if it couldn’t control revenue generated by new water customers. The city ended talks with the water district in January and said it would supply no more water to the rural water district than required under a 1995 agreement.

The $550 million Honda plant, which is slated to open in fall 2008, is not affected by the dispute. The rural water corporation agreed to supply water to the site until December this year; by then, the city is expected to have extended its own line to the plant.

Panattoni Development Co. LLC recently received approval to launch a 425-acre industrial park near the Honda plant. The Sacramento, Calif., developer built a warehouse in Plainfield that was leased to Epson America Inc. in 2005, and has started construction on a 143,000-square-foot office building at City Center Drive and Pennsylvania Street in Carmel.

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