Change to come after South Bend adopts Near West Side Neighborhood Plan

Published: Aug. 16, 2022 at 5:58 PM EDT
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - The South Bend Plan Commission adopted the proposed Near West Side Neighborhood Plan Monday Night.

The plan is an added amendment to South Bend’s Official Policy, which leaders said will encourage funding of projects meant to improve the neighborhood.

“Infrastructure, traffic calming, land use, parks and open space, like all the things you might find in a neighborhood, this plan tries to address,” said Tim Corcoran, South Bend’s Director of Planning.

The neighborhood plan went hand in hand with the city’s desire to update their Comprehensive Plan. Something that leaders said could not be done without the adoption of neighborhood plans- starting with the Near West Side.

“And hopefully we can figure out ways to incrementally make the neighborhood a better place to live, a safer place to live and one in which more people want to come and live here in South Bend,” Corcoran said.

Corcoran told 16 News Now that improvements highlighted in the plan included: Reparation of curbs, sidewalks, and brick streets, creation of an easily accessed neighborhood park, calming traffic, which was one of the most pressing issues across all neighborhoods, and more.

“It’s a way for us to engage with the neighbors, for them to talk to us about things they like about their neighborhood, things that they want to see change, the problems that they have. And for us, that communication is really important and then we’re able to address some of those issues over time,” Corcoran said.

According to the city, neighborhood plans are created to be completed over the next twenty years, but Corcoran said they wanted to start making improvements as soon as possible.

“It’s really probably within the next year that we should start to see more engagement on specific issues within the neighborhood and then look to implement within the year after that,” said Corcoran.

The Near West Side Neighborhood Plan was one of four neighborhood plans the city hoped would be adopted in order to revitalize more of the city.

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