Vol. 10, December 2010 - Awards and Honors

FOCUS ON

South Bend initiatives and people earn high honors

Earlier this month, South Bend added its fourth major national recognition of the year. Whether it’s building better bike lanes or building bridges between diverse groups, South Bend is gaining widespread recognition and awards for great ideas, great initiatives and great people. Here’s a look at some recent additions to our trophy case. Read more …

FEATURES

Neighborhood revitalization transforms streetscape, relationships

It’s hard to imagine, as you stroll through the eclectic new mix of retail and office space, mid-priced and upscale homes, and a neighborhood center emblazoned with pop art, that 10 years ago this area on South Bend’s Northeast Side was headed for certain economic decline.

Even harder to perceive is the years of interpersonal transformation it took, involving neighborhood residents, area healthcare institutions, the City of South Bend and representatives from the University of Notre Dame, to give this neighborhood new life. But that transformation undergirds virtually every sign of hope in this neighborhood’s transformation. Read more …

South Bend Heritage Foundation shares its resources for revitalization

Strengthening neighborhoods is nothing new to the South Bend Heritage Foundation. Here’s a closer look at the Foundation’s good work in building strong communities throughout the city. Read more …

COMPANY PROFILE

Award-winning Chocolate Café enlivens downtown

Brussels has Godiva. San Francisco has Ghirardelli. And for South Bend, the familiar blue-and-gold boxes of the award-winning South Bend Chocolate Co. have helped to lend a certain élan to South Bend’s reputation as a city with a presence in its own right. According to company founder and president Mark Tarner, it’s all part of the plan. Read more …

IN CONVERSATION

Rob DeCleene, executive director, South Bend/Mishawaka Convention and Visitors Bureau

By Phil D’Amico, director of business growth, the Chamber of Commerce of St. Joseph County

Rob DeCleene has been the executive director of the South Bend/Mishawaka Convention and Visitors Bureau since May 2010. He has extensive experience in the tourism industry, serving in a similar capacity in Bloomington, Ind., for more than nine years, and 16 years total experience in the tourism industry. Rob is originally from the South Bend area. Read more …

MULTIMEDIA

A video look at the award-winning project

Want a closer look at the story behind the City of South Bend’s recent National League of Cities Gold Award for Municipal Excellence? Click here.

NLC TV interviews South Bend delegation

At last week’s National League of Cities Congress of Cities & Exposition in Denver, NLC TV interviewed representatives from South Bend about their award-winning efforts in the city’s Northeast Neighborhood. Click here.

INNOVATION IN GOVERNMENT

Morris gets makeover to host wedding party

The innovative response by the staff for the Morris Performing Arts Center and the Palais Royale ballroom, two public facilities operated by the City of South Bend, is being profiled in the Winter 2011 issue of Wedding Day magazine. Read more ...

EVENTS & HAPPENINGS

Community celebrates school’s national achievement

Kennedy Primary Academy, the kindergarten through grade 4 magnet school for the South Bend Community School Corp., has been named by the U.S. Department of Education as a National Blue Ribbon School of Excellence.

The school, located on South Bend’s West Side at 609 N. Olive St., was honored in a community recognition ceremony on Monday, Dec. 6, at Century Center. Read more ...

Santa to try whitewater instead of reindeer

For the sixth consecutive year, Santa Claus will arrive in South Bend by rafting on the East Race Waterway, North America’s first man-made urban whitewater course.

As part of a charity event for the community’s children, Santa Claus will raft down the East Race Waterway between 4:30 and 5:30 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 10. People will gather outside the Commerce Center, where Santa will give away candy and there will be hot chocolate, animals to pet and cookies to decorate.                                                  

TECH PARK UPDATE

Innovation Park, at one year, has 30 clients

At the one-year anniversary of the opening of Innovation Park at Notre Dame, the release of the inaugural year-in-review demonstrates that Innovation Park is achieving what it set out to do: accelerate the challenging process of turning innovative ideas into reality. Read more …

NEWS & HEADLINES

South Bend’s bond rating rises for 2nd time in 2010

For the second time in 2010, a national credit rating agency has affirmed an improved bond rating for the City of South Bend.

Fitch Ratings recently affirmed an AA+ rating on four bonds issued by the City of South Bend’s Redevelopment Authority and revised the City’s rating outlook from negative to stable. (In February, the Standard & Poor’s bond rating service upgraded the City’s bond rating to AA- from A+.) More info here …

Renovation planned for downtown landmark

The 1st Source Center, a nine-story, glass-and-steel landmark built 30 years ago in the heart of downtown, will undergo a $14.2-million renovation, according to a public-private agreement announced Friday, Dec. 3 by the City of South Bend. More info here ...

Help shape the River Walk’s final phase in South Bend

The City of South Bend is seeking public comments on four alternatives for completing its multipurpose trail along the St. Joseph River from 26th Street to Logan Street. Click on the link below to view four options emerging from River Park neighborhood meetings and prepared by consulting engineer Lawson-Fisher Associates on behalf of the City’s Engineering Division and South Bend Parks and Recreation Department. Send your comments to JCorle@SouthBendIN.gov.
More info here …

Innovative Integration on ‘Inc. 5000’ list

Inc. magazine ranked Innovative Integration Inc. as No. 957 on its fourth annual Inc. 5000, an exclusive ranking of the nation’s fastest-growing private companies. The list represents the most comprehensive look at the most important segment of the economy — America’s independent-minded entrepreneurs. Innovative Integration has offices in Indianapolis and South Bend, Ind.

“The leaders of the companies on this year’s Inc. 5000 have figured out how to grow their businesses during the longest recession since the Great Depression,” says Inc. president Bob LaPointe. “The 2010 Inc. 5000 showcases a particularly hardy group of entrepreneurs.” More info here …

Notre Dame nano researcher gets $9.9 million grant

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has awarded a team of researchers led by Wolfgang Porod, Freimann Professor of Electrical Engineering and director of the University of Notre Dame’s Center for Nano Science and Technology, a $9.9 million grant to explore logic in a magnetic system, which may open the door to all-magnetic information processing systems. More info here …

DTSB joins Indiana Main Street program

Downtown South Bend Inc., which works in partnership with the City of South Bend for downtown revitalization efforts, has joined the Indiana Main Street program, according to Lt. Gov. Becky Skillman.

More than 100 other Indiana communities are part of Indiana Main Street, which encourages the revitalization and restoration of downtown areas in Indiana cities and towns. The program is administered by the Indiana Office of Community and Rural Affairs.

“Viable downtowns are crucial to the economic health of our state,” Skillman says. “I’m pleased to welcome Downtown South Bend to Indiana Main Street. The program is creating opportunities for revitalization and restoration, as well as encouraging a favorable environment for businesses.”

DTSB’S efforts include creating new streetscapes, facilitating housing initiatives, developing commercial and mix-use projects, and strategic planning for the downtown community. Additionally, DTSB helps coordinate, support, and advocate for the downtown South Bend community in a number of ways, such as promoting growth of existing businesses, recruiting new businesses, and encouraging residential living. DTSB’s working Board of Directors represents local business merchants and large corporations in the downtown area.