July 2016: South Bend – Elkhart Region Update




The Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) has integrated the former Indiana Regional Cities Initiative website into the iedc.in.gov website and will be launching a new blog to keep readers updated on the latest regional development news and progress happening in regions across the state.

The IEDC will pull content from regional newsletters and media coverage, but they also want to hear from you directly. What affect has regional collaboration hadon your communities in the South Bend-Elkhart Region and on specific projects here? How do you expect this increased focus on quality of place to impact residents?
Read More.


The implementation of the Regional Cities Initiative is moving forward. Applicationsfor the Regional Cities Initiative projects which were included in the Plan were due June 15th. Michiana Partnership will be working with the RDA board members and project teams throughout July to review the readiness of each project and prioritize projects to advance to the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) for final approval and disbursement of funds. The next RDA Board Meeting is set for Monday, July 25th.

For more information about the Regional Cities Initiative and the South Bend – Elkhart Region, Click Here.



Last month, Michiana Partnership hosted SIOR’s from around the Midwest to the region during a Fun Shoot event. The day began with a sporting clays shoot at Deer Creek Hunt Club, followed by a distillery tour and tasting at Journeyman’s Distillery, and ending with dinner at Copper Rock Steakhouse at the Four Winds Casino. These events were free to SIOR members, subsidized by outstanding sponsors, including Wells Fargo SBA Lending, Cornerstone Alliance, MNO-Bmadsen and Michiana Partnership.

Here at Michiana Partnership, we are focused on marketing and business recruitment efforts for the South Bend-Elkhart Region in northern Indiana and southwest Michigan. It is our priority to ensure that top real estate professionals, like SIOR members, are aware of the South Bend-Elkhart Region and its phenomenal business climate. To learn more about SIOR, Click Here.



There’s no denying the South Bend International Airport (SBN) is an economic engine for the region. Delta and United offer service multiple times daily to five key hubs – Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, Minneapolis and Newark – allowing businesses to conveniently connect with customers and suppliers.

In addition to the legacy carriers, Allegiant offers low cost airfare to vacation destinations in Florida, Phoenix and Las Vegas. Owned and operated by the St. Joseph County Airport Authority, South Bend International’s multi-modal terminal serves over one million air, rail and bus passengers each year.

According to the 2012 Economic Impact Report from the Aviation Authority of Indiana, South Bend International’s total annual economic impact on the region was in excess of $1.7 billion. Since then, SkyWest has opened a maintenance base on the airfield starting with 40 employees and has grown to 70 employees. Corporate Wings has opened as the second Fixed Base Operator offering a competitive option for fuel and other general aviation needs.

Visit www.flySBN.com for further information and see why flying from your local airport is the smart choice, and most often the less expensive
travel option.


Currently, two international facilities – the Federal Inspection Station (FIS) and General Aviation Facility (GAF) – are under construction scheduled to be complete this fall. This will allow for commercial international flights nonstop to and from SBN, and will allow general and corporate aviation aircraft the ability to land in South Bend as their first point of entry into the U.S. instead of stopping in another community before finishing their flight to South Bend.

SBN received its international designation from U.S. Customs and Border Protection in early 2014. The FIS will allow commercial aircraft the ability to fly nonstop to and from international destinations. Passengers will be able to clear Customs in these new facilities. The GAF will offer these same services for corporate and general aviation aircraft.


Last month we welcomed a group of real estate brokers from across the Midwest to the South Bend-Elkhart region by hosting a group of SIOR realtors for a Fun Shoot in Berrien County. The brokers were able to experience many of the amenities that Harbor Country has to offer, including recreation and sporting, the craft beverage and entertainment opportunities, all with our beautiful Lake Michigan beaches as a backdrop. It is partly a result of these amenities and other efforts to develop quality of place assets across the region that we are experiencing more interest from businesses as they consider locating here. These brokers were also able to learn more about our attractive business climate, workforce and real estate opportunities, all of which would benefit their clients if they were to expand or relocate here to the South Bend-Elkhart region.

In an effort to enhance these quality of place assets, Michiana Partnership continues our work with the RDA to review the 26 projects that submitted full applications for Regional Cities funding. The RDA will meet again on July 25th to determine which projects will be submitted to the IEDC for final approval.

At the same time, Jim Finan has ramped up Michiana Partnership’s business recruitment efforts, recently making a sales trip to New York City focused on Medical Device Manufacturing industry. Jim is heading to Chicago soon, focusing on recruiting efforts in conjunction with the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) Expo and related events.

It’s a unique recipe that leads to successful economic development. One that includes both the quality-of-place aspects and the business-recruitment aspects. The millennial generation is more focused on the amenities of a community, but in order to be sustaining and a truly vibrant economy, you have to have employment opportunities. Because it takes both components to be successful, our region’s approach has been to do both hand in hand.

Enjoy your summer!

Regina Emberton
President & CEO
Michiana Partnership