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Local Agency Wants More Minority Businesses to Participate in Growth  

2023-12-31 – BE&O RYB

As 2024 approaches, one city agency looks forward to a year filled with new development and opportunities for small businesses. 

The Indianapolis Office of Minority and Women Business Development (OMWBD) says a busy year is ahead for organizations looking to participate in new construction progress across the city. David Fredricks, Director of the OMWBD, says one of the largest projects on the horizon is the new PanAm Plaza and convention center expansion. He touts the opportunity for women and minority-owned businesses to contract with the city to help build the new hotel that will bring hundreds of new rooms downtown and change the city’s skyline. Scheduled to open in the fall of 2026, the city is now looking for contractors to fill many different needs.  

Fredricks also highlighted the $80 million gift IndyParks received from the Lilly Endowment. He says diverse businesses have many opportunities to work with the parks department to help build new playgrounds, upgrade existing facilities, and create new spaces over the next 2-3 years.  

With the passing of the 2023 Indianapolis city budget, Fredricks says Indianapolis DPW will see a boat in its funding next year, and the department will be looking to partner with contractors to complete road repairs, fix sidewalks, and more. The over $1 billion in funding will stretch out over the next 4-5 years.   

Other projects in 2024 include the city working with developers to build more affordable housing, a new multi-story hotel being built next to the old city hall downtown, and the Eleven Park sports, retail, and housing complex. 

Fredricks says the city of Indianapolis wants diverse vendors and business owners to have access to opportunities when bidding on contracts for city projects. As development continues downtown and across the city, he encourages businesses to register with the OMWBD.