Concord Mall could see new life with proposed development

NOW: Concord Mall could see new life with proposed development

A shrinking mall is close to a big change.

The Elkhart Planning & Zoning Commission recommended approval for a rezoning petition for Concord Mall, Monday, which could turn the decades-old shopping center into a new, mixed-use development.

Ann and Tony Nguyen, who own the Nail Care SALON in Concord Mall, are excited about the possibilities.

"We’ve been struggling off and on for a long time, we’re so excited, can't wait to be alive again,” Ann said." 

Nail Care SALON has been a tenant for more than 20 years. It's now one of just three remaining.

"There is recognition it’s somewhat of a blighted property," Elkhart City Councilmember Aaron Mishler said. "Something needs to be done."

Those in Elkhart, including Mishler, hold fond memories of the shopping center that has been around since the 1970s. But tenants and costumers alike have seen the decline.

Developers want to revitalize the space, but not as a mall. A mixed development with housing, businesses, and industrial space, which would extend past its current facilities.

"Which was brought forward by an organization that works with malls in similar states of decline will change the main building to a light manufacturing that could bring new jobs to the area, as well as some multifamily housing,” Mishler said.

If the re-zoning plan is approved by the City Council, construction could begin as early as the end of the year or in Spring 2024.

"[The Concord Mall is] an important symbol for the strength and vitality of our community," Mishler said. 

Now that rezoning has been recommended, the Elkhart City Council will need to give final approval. The Council is expected to vote on the Concord Mall rezoning over its next two meeting, giving people time to ask questions and voice concerns.

Existing Concord Mall layout Petition to Planning & Zoning Commission

Proposed Concord Mall development plan Petition to Planning & Zoning Commission

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