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City leaders: More businesses could pop up on South Bend's east side

The east side of South Bend is becoming home to some new businesses and it may even be a hot spot for more developers in the future.

After one of the oldest businesses on Lincoln Way East was put up for sale, city leaders say it might be the right time to buy and sell in that area.

Based on what we’ve seen in the last few years, city leaders say it might be time to start paying more attention to areas in the city that some think have been overlooked for too long.

55 rooms are soon-to-be emptied out after owner of the Wooden Indian Motel on Lincoln Way East has decided to put the 65-year-old property up for sale. His asking price: $1.2 million, and the timing may be just right.

"We've seen a lot of new businesses pop up just outside of downtown South Bend,” Tim Corcoran, Director of Planning with the City of South Bend.

Corcoran says that area of South Bend has seen some improvements just over the last few years.

You've also got things like the crooked ewe, the armory, The break you know there are other places like that that are popping up all over the place,” said Corcoran.

And those businesses are doing well.

"These are all within like one block of the river it shows that there's interest in the area,” said Corcoran.

Owner of the motel, Ron Koehler, says he’s already received an offer on the property for $836,000 from neighboring IUSB but he plans on getting the full asking price, despite troubles the motel has seen in the past.

The motel has been home to many issues over the last decade including being the scene of a deadly police shooting. In 2007, Officer Nick Polizzotto  responded to the motel and was shot and killed there during the call.

Now with the many recent investments happening downtown, Corcoran says work is being done on the edges.

"Mishawaka Avenue has seen some interesting things happen there. It is one of our commercial corridors that is an important street with the city,” said Corcoran.

And while the future of the Wooden Indian Motel is still in the air, the city of South Bend is interested in your input nearby.

“Yeah we'd like to see more things happen there and as people have ideas you could come and talk to us see what we can do to help out,” said Corcoran.

After reaching out to IUSB regarding the offer, they responded saying that the university does not comment on real estate opportunities.

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