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South Bend Brew Werks closes

Published: Mar. 2, 2021 at 5:58 PM EST
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - There’s trouble brewing in downtown South Bend, but little in the way of beer for the time being.

The South Bend Brew Werks was forced to close its doors last Wednesday.

When the restaurant/ brewery opened in a State Theater storefront in 2013 it was a sign of hope that the entire building could be brought back to life.

Now, the Brew Werks departure seems to signal something different.

“We’re basically being ushered out the door in a flood of water around our ankles,” said Brew Werks owner Steve Lowe. “You see where water was running down the walls here, you see where it was hitting the pipe up here and coming down.”

Lowe says the Brew Werks flooded after snow melting on the roof made its way down to the first floor last Wednesday. “Unfortunately, we can’t reopen this spot until the roof is fixed, and our landlord has not been very receptive to doing anything to make that happen.”

Over the years, the State Theater building has gone through many changes of ownership—although little else has changed.

The Brew Werks has been a tenant for eight years. Steve Lowe has stopped hoping the building would be renovated and has started the process of packing up and walking away.

“I feel everybody should feel sad about that and we do have a lot of people reach out and want to know why is the building in the shape that it’s in? And it’s complicated but it’s also a pretty easy answer. It’s because nobody’s cared about it for a very long time and the people that have had their hands on the owner ship of this building have cared even less than not at all.”

The Brew Werks had planned on relocating before the flood happened. That process will now happen more quickly.

The Brew Werks will relocate about a block and a half away at the Hibberd Building on S. Michigan.

A spokesman for the City of South Bend said that the State Theater building has been cited for code violations related to roof and drainage issues and that a hearing on the matter was set for April 1.

He also said the city was willing to work with an owner who was willing and able to invest in the building.

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