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Local developer breaks ground on Nappanee housing project to bring more residents into community

Even in small towns around Indiana, generating enough housing remains a challenge. In Nappanee, developer RYoder Construction
The population of Nappanee sits at just under 7,000 people per the last U.S. Census. However Tony Chimienti with RYoder Construction says that number almost doubles during the day as workers flock to the area that has a heavy manufacturing presence.

In effort to keep some of the workforce local, RYoder broke ground this week on a project called Wellfield Community which will add 125 homes into a new neighborhood off of County Road 52.

“Our population here grows almost 50% during the day. But a lot of those people don’t live here because there’s not a lot of housing available," Chimienti said, adding the new homes will bring in people from outside the community in addition to letting those currently in Nappanee a chance to upgrade.

The Wellfield development will feature a mixture of single-family homes, villas and what Chimienti dubs “estates” which are larger lots where residents can custom build their homes. The single-family units cost just under $400,000.

Chimienti foresees a mix of older residents and young professionals living in the neighborhood once it’s complete. In total, RYoder plans to spend close to $10 million on the development and the project is getting money from the city of Nappanee in the form of TIF financing.

Though construction costs are in flux and often increase greatly from the start of a project, Chimienti said RYoder has contracted with mostly local suppliers who are understand the need to keep prices within reason.

The first phase of the construction will see 55 homes built and Chimienti said the second phase won't start until 75% of the homes in Phase One are sold, which could be in two years.

Marek Mazurek has been with WVPE since April 2023, though he's been in Michiana for most of his life. He has a particular interest in public safety reporting. When he's not on the radio, Marek enjoys getting way too into Notre Dame football and reading about medieval English history.