drewry brewery indiana
Portions of the abandoned brewery date back to the 1860s, but it has been closed since 1972.
Photo by Michael Caterina, courtesy of the South Bend Tribune.

Last call for Indiana brewery

The city of South Bend, Indiana, is clearing the way for the dismantling of a long vacant brewery.

June 27, 2022

A $4.2 million line item in the planed budget for the city of South Bend, Indiana, could mean the demolition process is nearing for a vacant brewery building.

A late June report from the South Bend Tribune says the line item, mentioned by the city’s mayor in a recent speech, is being met with praise by neighbors of the abandoned property.

One neighboring property owner wrote a letter to the newspaper in 2021 asking “How much longer is the city of South Bend going to allow an out-of-state owner to neglect this eyesore?”

The Tribune refers to the vacant property as one featuring a “torn fence, piles of debris [and a] ‘Danger” sign that warns of asbestos that may cause cancer.”

South Bend Mayor James Mueller has the abandoned brewery in mind as one of three structures to take down tied to the $4.2 million budget line item.

A Wikipedia page devoted to the old brewery with a red brick exterior says it was built in stages from 1865 to 1949. The Tribune says it closed in 1972.

In 1990, a National Register of Historic Places form regarding the brewery was filled out and filed with the United States Department of the Interior. That document does not offer a square footage figure, but mentions manufacturing (brewing), warehouse and office space on the site.

Property owners interviewed by the newspaper are unclear about any redevelopment plans for the property should the demolition process take place, with Tribune writer Alesia I. Redding saying a vision from the city should be “a priority.”

According to the city’s website, the South Bend Redevelopment Commission oversees redevelopment, and may also be involved in coordinating the demolition process.