Proposed architectural building theme along Front Street

The Vision

Through the collaboration of public and private interests, IronWorks is a strategically planned expansion of downtown Mishawaka designed to provide a true lifestyle experience.

IronWorks Property Timeline

This timeline illustrates the history of the industrial area on the south side of the St. Joseph River in downtown Mishawaka now called IronWorks of Mishawaka. It was most recently the site of Ball Band and then Uniroyal plants.

1833The St. Joseph Iron Works was founded and the original town was named after it. Industry was drawn to the site because of the swift flowing water on that stretch of the St. Joseph River.
1833?St. Joseph Iron Works plus three other small towns nearby were incorporated into one- the City of Mishawaka.
1874The Woolen Manufacturing Co. was incorporated.
1887The company gained recognition for a patented knit boot, the "all knit boot." Development of that boot and other rubber boots and shoes lead to rapid growth of the company.
1891The factory became known locally as Ball Band, a trademark name of one of the boots, which had a black band around the top and a red ball.
1898The company purchased Perkins Windmill Co. to expand its facilities.
1922The company became a wholly owned subsidiary of U.S. Rubber.
1942During World War II, the company manufactured rubber self-sealing fuel cells to equip U.S. military aircraft. About 10,000 workers were employed then.
1950Uniroyal became the parent company during the 1950s.
1969The manufacture of footwear was discontinued and the Mishawaka Rubber & Woolen Manufacturing Co. was dissolved.
1983The number of people employed dropped to 1,350.
1990Uniroyal Plastics Co. filed for bankruptcy.
April 1, 1997The plant was closed and the remaining employees moved to another location.
February 1998The U.S. Department of Justice, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the Indiana Department of Environmental Management and the City of Mishawaka began negotiations.
August 1998The City bought the site.
September 1998The first two buildings east of North Main Street were demolished.
June 17, 2000In an 8 a.m. blast, more than 5,000 sticks of dynamite reduced the five largest buildings on the site to rubble. The cleanup since then has included removal of contaminated soil and water by EPA contractors.
September 2002The City of Mishawaka issued a request for proposals from potential developers of the downtown riverfront area.
May 2005The Robert C. Beutter Riverfront Park was opened on part of the site.
May 10, 2006Established IronWorks of Mishawaka, LLC, as the business entity responsible for development of the 30 acre riverfront site.