A new lease on the old Studebaker building

A South Bend building that once housed the iconic automaker, Studebaker, is now getting a new lease on life nearly 50 years after the company went out of business.

A private developer is turning the old Studebaker assembly plant into a state of the art technology center.

The one-million square foot structure is six stories tall and is located just south of Coveleski Stadium and Union Station.

While it currently is called the Ivy Tower and is used primarily for leased vehicle storage, back in the days of Studebaker the structure was known as Building 84. For former employees like Stu Chapman, the building brings back fond memories.

“It's good to see that the city of South Bend and the entrepreneurs down here are starting to really do something with what's left of the properties,” said Chapman, who joined the company in the 1960’s.

Friday morning a group of former Studebaker employees toured the factory with the new developer who has big plans for the space.

“I want to take this negative icon and turn it into an extremely positive icon, and if my success is based on if South Bend can start believing in themselves again, then I knew I did something well” said Kevin Smith, CEO and President of Studebaker Building 84 LLC.

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