Ironworks Plaza set to open in Mishawaka in 2022
MISHAWAKA, Ind. - A new attraction in Mishawaka could be coming as early as next winter. Mayor Dave Wood joined Weigand Construction to break ground on their new Mishawaka Ironworks Café and Event Center.
For some, it may seem a bit like Mishawaka’s response to Howard Park in South Bend. But Mayor Dave Wood said this plaza has been in the work well before Howard’s creation.
Right off Main Street in Mishawaka is Beutter park. But now, it’s a work in progress.
"Mishawaka’s future core and city center is about the be transformed with this project here," Mishawaka Mayor Dave Wood said at the groundbreaking.
The $19 million project will include an indoor café, community center and a ice skating path for the winter that will replace the crumbling Merrifield ice rink.
There will also be a stage and a place for a city christmas tree.
"This is just an opportunity for us to bring activity to our downtown all the months of the year," Wood said.
5 years in the making, officials wanted to wait for more private development in the city before any remodeling.
"We’ve started construction in phases,” he said.
The new ameneties will be right next to the biergarden that has already gained a loyal following.
"The downtown mishawaka of my youth there wasn’t any activity downtown mishawaka. Now, anytime you come down here, you ill see families out enjoying a walk, a picnic a bike ride," he said.
It’s right across the street from a recently built luxury apartment complex, The Mill.
"It just was completed a year ago – it is 100% full," Wood said. "People want to live in downtown Mishawaka and this is just another added amenity to help us attract people to fill shops, restaurants and other things.”
Locals just beyond excited for the improvements to Beutter park.
“I think having more events will definitely bring more customers and we can definitely expand our business and do more variety with our donuts," Anna Gruber, the Shift Leader at Jack's Donuts said.
"I think people will come out and enjoy this area more," Grace Hammer who lives at The Mill said. “I will definitely go yes. We’ve used howard park so that’s been nice, so it’ll be nice to have something closer to home especially when it’s right next door.”
The plaza should be ready by winter 2022.
By then, Mayor Wood hopes to be able to expand the farmers market and hold special events – even festivals!
Now, with parks gaining more attention because of crime, what will city officials do to make sure this plaza is safe for all?
Wood said safety has already been a focus, with extra cameras in the area.
"We already have those in place, security cameras are here and running and we have extra patrols here daily and so those things are in place," he said.