NEW HAVEN, Ind. (WANE) — New Haven Mayor Steve McMichael gave a State of the City address Thursday, praising the city’s “strong and resilient” community and discussing various breakthroughs and challenges New Haven faces.
Some of the projects Mayor McMichael discussed included the recent announcement of the New Haven Workforce Group, which aims to attract remote workers to move to New Haven, and the Fields of Grace sports complex the city has planned with Grace Gathering East.
“We will continue to lead with a bold vision for New Haven and our future,” Mayor McMichael said. “Our unwavering goal is to make New Haven the number one 3rd class city in our region.”
Mayor McMichael also credited numerous local partners, including East Allen County Schools, the New Haven Chamber and the New Haven Community Foundation as part of the reason New Haven has seen success in recent years.
However, Mayor McMichael also addressed some challenges New Haven continues to face, including a lack of a diverse housing stock, as well as losing young residents to other communities.
“We must attract outside investment and investors to grow our community and provide jobs, housing and needed services for our residents,” Mayor McMichael said.
Another issue Mayor McMichael addressed involved the large presence of trains in New Haven.
Due to a railyard in New Haven, trains are commonplace across the city, and Mayor McMichael said the city has looked at three possible solutions to mitigate the issue.
The city initially considered adding an overpass or underpass at Broadway, but various issues caused that plan to be ruled out.
Mayor McMichael said the city has also considered diplomacy, but he said the city is unable to interfere with interstate commerce by means such as limiting the amount of times tracks are blocked.
Another possible solution involved New Haven using technology to create a system where residents could see when and where tracks are blocked in New Haven and when the tracks will be cleared.
Despite the roadblocks, Mayor McMichael expressed optimism in New Haven’s resiliency and hopes for the future.
“I believed a community is not defined by the challenges it faces, but how it faces the challenges,” Mayor McMichael said.
The State of the City Address took place at the New Haven Community Center.