READI grants awarded to help improve quality of life in north central Indiana

Published: Sep. 19, 2022 at 7:18 PM EDT
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ELKHART, Ind. (WNDU) - Monday was a day to dream and spend big.

$40 million in READI grant money was awarded to help fund 19 separate projects in St. Joseph, Elkhart, and Marshall Counties.

The program is designed to improve quality of life and to grow population.

The largest grant, $11.7 million, went to a project called the Beacon Health and Lifestyle District.

It calls for a complete makeover of an area by Memorial Hospital that covers two city blocks.

“Well, it’ll be a combination of a few different things. More than 240 housing units, including 100 units of workforce housing. A new hotel, 80 room hotel, proposed revamped Beacon health and fitness center in downtown South Bend, as well as expansive office and retail space,” said South Bend’s Acting Director of Community Investment, Caleb Bauer.

“It’s, you know, very far reaching. Very broad. It’s. It’s aspirational, transformational, with all those great adjectives right, that READI is trying to do to our region,” said Regional Development Authority Board President John DeSalle.

A $6.5 million grant was grated to Elkhart’s River District plan to create more housing in the heart of the city with a heart.

$5 million went toward the creation of a Mishawaka fieldhouse where athletic facilities would be used to host youth sports tournaments.

$2.6 million was granted to the Tolson Center, and $1.5 million went to the Morris Performing Arts Center expansion project.