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South Bend files lawsuit with future downtown brewery

South Bend, Ind. -- South Bend has filed a lawsuit against a new brewery hoping to open downtown this year. The city now asking the company to surrender the property. 

The resolution was approved by the South Bend Redevelopment Commission on Thursday. 

For other breweries in the area the resolution comes as a disappointment, who saw the new addition as an exciting move for downtown. 

"We definitely didn't see it as like a competitive thing," said Theresa Niezer, the assistant bar manager at South Bend Brew Werks. "We were just happy to have more people down here. Especially at this end of downtown, there's not a lot of food traffic so it would've just helped us."

According to the resolution, the owners had six months after the purchase agreement was closed to complete certain tasks including zoning and land use approvals. 

The closing date was February 24, 2017. The city says owners have yet to show evidence that they are pursuing those zoning and land use approvals. 

That's despite three formal letters and several informal notices requesting that evidence according to the resolution. 

City spokesman Mark Bode released a statement saying in part, "After numerous attempts to work with the developer, the city is pursuing legal action to enforce the terms of the agreement." 

As the legal matters continue, South Bend Brew Werks says it's disappointing, saying more breweries in the area would boost the downtown scene. 

"Craft beer drinkers definitely enjoy crawls, you know what I mean? If there's another place close by they would definitely have a beer here, there and vice versa. So yeah, it's a bummer," said Niezer. 


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