St. Joseph County Public Library Community Learning Center Breaks Ground


SOUTH BEND, Ind. (Feb. 27, 2020) -- As a part of an estimated $38 million renovation and expansion project, public-private leaders and government officials gathered on February 21st to celebrate the construction kick-off of the St. Joseph County Public Library’s redevelopment of the library building and construction of a new Community Learning Center.

The project will be a member of the LIFT Network Innovation Facilities, which is intended to provide access to research and learning facilities to reduce the risks and costs of innovation and increase the availability of resources for education and professional development across the South Bend - Elkhart Region. The 35,000-square-foot Community Learning Center will operate as a public technology hub providing digital access and training for residents seeking skills to aid in career advancement and placement.

“It is an exciting time for the South Bend – Elkhart Region as LIFT Innovation Facilities such as the St. Joseph County Public Library Community Learning Center begin to take shape,” said Regina Emberton, president and CEO of the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership. “With a programmatic focus on digital access and technology training, the Community Learning Center will serve as a critical resource for individuals looking to gain new digital skills and connect with employers via training programs. This space will catalyze many collaborations as well, with plans from groups such as the IT Sector Partnership and Community Foundation of St. Joseph County to engage in leadership initiatives once the center is open.”

Project completion for the center is slated for 2021.


About the Labs for Industry Futures and Transformation (LIFT) Network
The Labs for Industry Futures and Transformation (LIFT) Network was established to formalize the collaborative opportunities among the South Bend Elkhart Region’s innovation, R&D, workforce training and educational assets to provide a comprehensive portfolio of cutting-edge resources to support advancement in the region’s key industrial sectors. Collectively these efforts will support the South Bend - Elkhart Region through the transformation to an increasingly digital and automated future, enhancing the current manufacturing base with new business models, technologies and tailored workforce training programs while accelerating new high-tech sector growth in the region.

LIFT and the associated iNDustry Labs at Notre Dame were catalyzed by a $42.4 million Lilly Endowment grant awarded to the University of Notre Dame and the South Bend - Elkhart Regional Partnership in 2019.

About the Community Learning Center
Information about the move and renovation is available online at, for frequently asked questions please, click here. For additional information about the Community Learning Center please contact Communications Manager for the St. Joseph County Public Library, Jennifer Henecke, by email at

About South Bend - Elkhart Regional Partnership
The South Bend - Elkhart Regional Partnership (SBERP) is a collaboration of the economic development partners from 47, smart connected communities in Northern Indiana and Southwest Michigan. The Regional Partnership focuses on a long-term systemic approach to advance the region's economy by aligning the efforts of various stakeholders around five key areas: Educating a world-class WORKFORCE, Recruiting and retaining great TALENT, Attracting and growing new economy companies in complement to our remarkably strong manufacturing INDUSTRIES, Promoting INCLUSION and sparking opportunities for minorities and Helping ENTREPRENEURS thrive. The Regional Partnership seeks to unify and collaborate so that together, the communities across the region work together to achieve what cannot be done individually. For more information about the Regional Partnership, visit

Media Contact
Regina Emberton (SBERP) 574.344.4686 ext.4802 or