Get READI South Bend – Elkhart

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South Bend - Elkhart Region

We are excited to share that Indiana Economic Development Corp. (IEDC) launched READI 2.0 earlier this month. Once again, regions must apply to the state for funding. Should our region receive an award in Q2 of 2024, the region will then conduct a process to select local projects in summer 2024.

This time, regions can apply for up to $75 million, and only capital projects will be eligible. To view the South Bend - Elkhart region's READI 2.0 updates, click here.

 

More information can be found at IEDC’s 2.0 READI resources.

 

Through a collaborative process engaging leaders from across the region, the South Bend – Elkhart region was awarded the maximum amount of READI funds from the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) – $50 million – in December 2021. In 2022, the Northern Indiana Regional Development Authority awarded funds to 17 Quality of Place and 11 programmatic projects. These allocations will have an impact reaching far beyond city limits or county lines. These projects will expand opportunities for residents, improve and expand local amenities, thereby growing what makes our region unique and sets us apart. An area grows with people, by retaining our homegrown talent and drawing the best and brightest from other places.

Launched by Gov. Holcomb and led by the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC), READI encourages regional collaboration and data-driven, long-term planning that will attract and retain talent in Indiana. The $500 million READI fund was passed by legislation during the 2021 session and was divided among 17 regions. The IEDC awarded the maximum grant amount of $50 million each to five of the regions, including the South Bend – Elkhart region. Awards for the other regions ranged from $5 million to $30 million.

Awarded Projects

The capital projects that received READI funding are:

The programming projects that received READI funding are:

Talent Development – $3,176,370

  • enFocus Fellowship Expansion
  • Engineering Your Future
  • Experiential Learning Coordinator, Saint Joseph – District 7 Career Hub
  • Next Path Training
  • Regional Higher Education Talent Pipeline and Partnership Consortium
  • South Bend – Elkhart Regional Internship Program (Intern SBE)

Innovation – $1,380,000

  • South Bend – Elkhart READI Manufacturing Readiness Accelerator

Entrepreneurship – $1,161,065

  • Digital Storefront Project
  • enFocus Entrepreneurship Expansion Support
  • Talent for Tomorrow

Talent Attraction – $700,000

  • WE+YOU Talent Attraction and Retention Campaign

Highlights

RDA Makes Awards (9/19/22 and 12/15/22)

The Northern Indiana Regional Development Authority (RDA) and the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership released the Quality of Place Capital Projects Award Request for Proposals for the South Bend – Elkhart region’s Regional Economic Acceleration and Development Initiative (READI) award in June. The RDA selected 17 projects for funding allocations at its September 2022 board meeting. Over 50 applications were received, with a total request of over three times the amount of funds available to allocate! It is clear economic development is thriving and the demand is great in the South Bend – Elkhart region!

Program funding decisions were informed by the committee structure of the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership. Selected program operators were invited to apply through a competitive LOI process. The RDA allocated all its remaining READI funding to 11 programs in December 2022.

IEDC READI Implementation Team Visits the South Bend - Elkhart Region (2/24/22)

On Thursday, February 24th, the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership and the Regional Development Authority welcomed the Indiana Economic Development Corporation’s (IEDC) READI implementation team to the South Bend – Elkhart region to learn more about our Smart, Connected, Communities 2030 plan (our READI proposal) and gain a deeper understanding of how our region’s economic development is organized.

The IEDC team attended meetings over the course of the day, two of which we hosted at Regional Cities Initiative project locations, the Howard Park Community Center in downtown South Bend and Hotel Elkhart in downtown Elkhart.

The South Bend – Elkhart region kicked off the day at Howard Park with a presentation from South Bend – Elkhart READI Steering Committee representatives sharing specifics around the region’s economic development strategies including talent attraction and retention, quality of place and life, industry growth, education and workforce, entrepreneurship, and diversity, equity, and inclusion.

The day concluded with a roundtable discussion with Mayors and Commissioners from across the region at Hotel Elkhart. During this time, the IEDC team provided an overview of the program, both what has transpired since the award announcements and what lies ahead. This informal conversation provided the opportunity for all in attendance to ask questions directly to the IEDC and share feedback.
Accompanied by the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership’s Chief Strategy Officer, Bethany Hartley, the IEDC team also received a windshield tour of many Regional Cities Initiative projects that have been completed to showcase not only the region’s ability to successfully execute, but the add-on development that came from Regional Cities activities.

These Regional Cities projects included the South Bend Blue Ways (Notre Dame Boat House and Howard Park), Studebaker Building 84 and 113, Potawatomi Zoo, The Mill at Ironworks Plaza, Ironworks Phase II at Beutter Park, Elkhart Health and Aquatics Center, and River Point West (River District). The IEDC team also received an overview of Regional Cities projects completed in Marshall County including the REES Theatre, Marshall County Manufacturing Center, and the Marshall County Aquatics Center (Susan Bardwell Aquatics Center).

To view photos from the tour, click here.

In 2015, the Regional Cities Initiative (RCI) granted our region, along with Northeast and Southwest Indiana, $42 million each with the intent of transforming each region into renowned places to live, work and play. It was forward-thinking by mayors, commissioners, local economic development organizationshigher education institutions, community leaders and chambers of commerce that cast the vision for the South Bend – Elkhart region, and laid the foundation for our region’s ability to come together – not only to secure resources, but also to advance prosperity through collaborative programming and services. The RCI – and more recently READI – show that regions matter and collaboration between communities is important.

Gov. Holcomb Awards $50 Million READI Grant to South Bend – Elkhart Region (12/15/21)

The South Bend – Elkhart region consisting of 22 cities and towns in Elkhart, Marshall, and St. Joseph counties in Indiana has been awarded $50 million to support regional economic development plans across the region. The South Bend – Elkhart region is one of 17 regions that received funding through Indiana’s Regional Economic Acceleration and Development Initiative (READI).

“The seventeen regions submitted innovative, creative and visionary projects that will result in a positive economic impact on Indiana’s future,” said Gov. Holcomb. “It took immense collaboration between communities as they put aside their own visions and worked together to present the best plan for the region. These plans will shape Indiana for generations to come and bring value to our state like nothing we’ve witnessed before. I want to thank the general assembly for having the courage and leadership to prioritize this initiative.”

Launched by Gov. Holcomb and led by the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC), READI builds on the framework and successes of the Indiana Regional Cities Initiative and the 21st Century Talent Initiative, encouraging regional collaboration and data-driven, long-term planning that, when implemented, will attract and retain talent in Indiana. The $500 million READI fund was passed by legislation during the 2021 session. The IEDC awarded the maximum grant amount of $50 million each to five of the seventeen regions, including South Bend - Elkhart. Awards for the other regions ranged from $5 to 30 million.

“On behalf of half a million of us who live in the South Bend – Elkhart region, I want to thank Gov. Holcomb and the IEDC for continuing to invest in our region, not only with your dollars, but with your time and trust,” said John DeSalle, Chair of the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Development Authority Board and Executive Engineer-in-Residence, iNDustry Labs at Notre Dame. “And congratulations to the other sixteen regional recipients, this is a win for each of our regions and for the state of Indiana.”

Earlier this month, a team of South Bend – Elkhart regional leaders presented the region’s “Smart Connected Communities 2030 Plan” (The Plan) to the IEDC and members of the READI review committee. The presentation represented the final phase of the region’s READI application process, following The Plan submission in September of this year. The READI review committee, an external seven-member citizen committee, reviewed and scored the plans based on the established guidelines and against other relevant data, including historical population trends.

Considering additional public and private investments that would serve as matching funds to the READI grant, the overall impact is significant. Based on the example projects included in the South Bend – Elkhart region’s Plan, the $50 million from the state of Indiana could generate over $461 million of total investment, comprised of 11 percent READI grant funds, 14 percent local public funding, and 75 percent private sector funding.

“This award is a prime example of the outstanding collaborative efforts that have led to immense progress for the South Bend – Elkhart region,” said Regina Emberton, President and CEO of the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership. “Of course, none of this work is possible without the dedication, passion, and commitment of our community and regional stakeholders to making the South Bend – Elkhart region a prime location to live and work.”

On the heels of securing a $42 million Regional Cities Initiative grant awarded by the state of Indiana in 2015, the South Bend – Elkhart region’s shared vision catalyzed a $42 million grant from the Lilly Endowment to launch the Labs for Industry Futures and Transformation (LIFT) Network and associated iNDustry Labs at Notre Dame. To date, the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Partnership who also serves as administrator for the South Bend – Elkhart Regional Development Authority has helped secure over $134 million in grant funding for the region. To read the full press release, click here.

Region's READI Presentation to IEDC (12/1/21)

On Wednesday, December 1, 2021, the Northern Indiana Regional Development Authority presented the South Bend - Elkhart region's “Smart Connected Communities 2030 Plan” (The Plan) to the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC) and members of the READI review committee. The Plan focuses on increasing talent attraction and retention, improving overall quality of place and quality of life, and amplifying the impact of the region’s entrepreneurial ecosystem and innovation economy. Watch the full presentation below.

Smart Connected Communities 2030 Plan

Regional Videos

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