Feb 27, 2024

Regions Submit READI 2.0 Proposals; Total READI Program Expected to Leverage Billions More in Population Growth and Quality of Place Investments

15 regions submit READI 2.0 funding applications, outlining regional growth strategies to grow populations, employment opportunities, per capita income and community assets 


Governor Eric J. Holcomb today announced 15 regions representing all 92 counties submitted proposals for quality of life and quality of place funding through the expansion of the Indiana Regional Economic Acceleration and Development Initiative (READI 2.0). READI 2.0 is allocating a second round of $500 million to accelerate community development investments statewide, and it will be invested alongside $250 million in grant funding awarded by the Lilly Endowment Inc. This funding is expected to attract a minimum 4:1 match of local public and private funding, yielding at least $3 billion invested to increase the vibrancy and prosperity of Hoosier communities.


“Indiana is leading the nation in quality of life and quality of place investment initiatives,” said Gov. Holcomb. “Through the state’s READI program, we’re collaboratively investing billions to grow Indiana’s population, cultivate vibrant and sustainable communities, and better the lives of all Hoosiers today and tomorrow.”



READI 2.0, which was part of the governor’s 2023 Next Level Agenda and approved by the Indiana General Assembly, was a direct response to the significant demand for quality of place investments from communities across the state. READI 2.0 will build on the momentum of READI 1.0, which has awarded $487 million to 353 unique projects and programs across the state, yielding $12.6 billion invested (26:1 investment leverage ratio) in quality of life, quality of place and quality of opportunity initiatives.  

The READI 2.0 funding proposals, which are listed below, outline each region’s overall vision for its future; an assessment of the current economic and community landscape; growth strategies and action plans to improve its quality of life, quality of place and quality of opportunity; and its successes and learnings from READI 1.0. Each proposal will be evaluated on a variety of factors, including economic development potential, the level of focus on rural communities, the degree of regional collaboration, and alignment with the state’s economic development priorities, such as population growth, per capita income growth, growth in employment opportunities, educational attainment, housing units developed, childcare capacity and innovation activities.  

Accelerate Rural Indiana 
Led by the Accelerate Rural Indiana Regional Development Authority

  • Counties: Decatur, Rush, Shelby + City: Batesville 
  • Proposal Themes: Reimagine the rural region’s ability to attract and retain talent by expanding and improving housing options, making place-based asset improvements, increasing regional education opportunities, upgrading and expanding infrastructure, and telling the region’s story. 

Central Indiana 
Led by the Central Indiana Regional Development Authority  

  • Counties: Boone, Hamilton, Hancock, Hendricks, Johnson, Madison, Marion, Morgan, Putnam 
  • Proposal Themes: Promote the development of walkable and connected living, innovation and recreational districts that serve as magnets for talent attraction and innovation and provide links to arts, culture and recreation. 

East Central 
Led by the East Central Indiana Regional Partnership 

  • Counties: Blackford, Delaware, Fayette, Grant, Henry, Jay, Randolph, Wayne 
  • Proposal Themes: Accelerate economic growth and regional prosperity by stabilizing the regional population through investments in quality of life, housing and infrastructure, childcare and support for families, and education and opportunity.    

Greater Lafayette
Led by the Greater Lafayette Commerce Community and Economic Development Foundation 

  • Counties: Benton, Carroll, Fountain, Montgomery, Tippecanoe, Warren, White 
  • Proposal Themes: Grow regional population in both rural and urban areas by focused investment at Purdue University to support the growing semiconductor Industry in Indiana, and supporting a concentrated effort to retain and development talent and attracting new workers to the region through investments in housing, quality of place and community vibrancy, the development of parks and trails, and investments in arts and culture. 

Indiana First 
Led by the Southwest Indiana Development Council 

  • Counties: Harrison, Knox, Perry, Pike, Spencer 
  • Proposal Themes: Remove barriers to and encourage development by investing in infrastructure and increasing the availability of shovel-ready sites; future-proof regional workforce and create opportunities for upskilling; diversify region’s economy and foster innovation, entrepreneurship, and business attraction and retention; increase housing options; and provide amenities and services that support population growth and diversification. 

Indiana Uplands 
Led by the Regional Opportunity Initiatives Inc. 

  • Counties: Brown, Crawford, Daviess, Dubois, Greene, Lawrence, Martin, Monroe, Orange, Owen 
  • Proposal Themes: Grow the region’s capacity as a national innovation hub by leveraged advanced technologies in key employment sectors (advanced manufacturing, life sciences, and national security and defense) by focusing on critical housing, infrastructure and place-based assets; developing and attracting in-demand talent; and enhancing the region’s unique cultural, artistic, physical and livable amenities.  

North Central 
Led by the North Central Indiana Regional Planning Council 

  • Counties: Cass, Clinton, Fulton, Howard, Miami, Tipton 
  • Proposal Themes: Maximize and build on recent regional momentum to ensure long-term dynamic growth. Accelerate leadership in innovation investment and advanced manufacturing and technological innovation by growing a skilled workforce; enriching the region with quality-of-life assets, such as housing and childcare; and supporting entrepreneurship and small business.  

Led by the Northeast Indiana RDA 

  • Counties: Adams, Allen, DeKalb, Huntington, LaGrange, Kosciusko, Noble, Steuben, Wabash, Wells, Whitley 
  • Proposal Themes: Accelerate the region’s trajectory as an innovative, vibrant and winning region by growing hardtech and medtech industry leadership, fostering creative sector innovation, and supporting population growth through infrastructure, housing, childcare, education innovation, community connectivity and cultural vibrancy.   

Led by the Northwest Indiana Forum 

  • Counties: Lake, Porter, LaPorte, Jasper, Newton, Pulaski, Starke 
  • Proposal Themes: Create a dynamic economic environment fueled by innovation, diversity and talent by investing in the advanced energy sector, expanding investment-ready assets, developing opportunity campuses to support communities, enhance destination development and amplify regional innovation and creative cultures.  

Our Southern Indiana 
Led by the Our Southern Indiana Regional Development Authority 

  • Counties: Clark, Floyd, Jefferson, Scott, Washington 
  • Proposal Themes: Catalyze regional growth, with an emphasis on impacting rural and disadvantaged communities; increase housing availability; leverage business and innovation parks to expand employment opportunities; partner with regional universities to grow educational attainment and innovation activity; and ensure quality of life amenities like childcare access and affordability.  

South Bend-Elkhart 
Led by the Northern Indiana Regional Development Authority 

  • Counties: Elkhart, Marshall, St. Joseph 
  • Proposal Themes: Propel the region into the future with strong investments to attract and retain talent, equip tomorrow’s talent, drive innovation and entrepreneurship, accelerate industry diversification, and enhance infrastructure.  

South Central 
Led by the Southern Indiana Housing and Community Development Corporation 

  • Counties: Bartholomew, Jackson, Jennings + Town: Edinburgh 
  • Proposal Themes: Inspire and cultivate collaboration among companies and communities to build powerful technologies, prosperous communities and a resilient future by focusing on innovation and entrepreneurship, education and workforce development, housing and quality of place.  

Led by SEI READI Inc. 

  • Counties: Dearborn, Ohio, Switzerland, Union, Franklin, Ripley (excludes city of Batesville) 
  • Proposal Themes: Leverage the region’s natural resources and unique qualities to grow economic vitality, population and generational prosperity through strategic investments in housing, cultural amenities, infrastructure, targeted industries, and childcare systems.  

Led by Southwest Indiana RDA (SWIRDA) 

  • Counties: Gibson, Posey, Vanderburgh, Warrick 
  • Proposal Theme: Foster population growth and upward mobility by connecting 50 miles of riverfront with inspiring public amenities, attractions and housing; grow high-paying jobs; improve quality of place for healthier residents; build housing near employment clusters; and capitalize on the I-69 Ohio River Crossing to create new regional opportunities.   

Wabash River
Led by the Wabash River RDA 

  • Counties: Clay, Parke, Sullivan, Vermillion, Vigo 
  • Proposal Themes: Prioritize regional increases in population growth and retention, per capita income and educational attainment rates by investing in early childhood education; innovation, education and workforce training; housing availability; and destination and recreational development.  

The IEDC will review and assess the submitted plans before making formal recommendations to the IEDC board of directors on April 11. Once investment allocations are finalized, the IEDC will begin coordinating with each region to identify regionally significant capital and infrastructure projects for investment. Regions awarded funding allocations will also have the opportunity to submit projects focused on blight reduction and redevelopment as well as arts and culture initiatives for match funding through the Lilly Endowment Inc.  

More information on READI 2.0, including application guidance and evaluation frameworks is available at A map of the identified regions can be found here