Mayor Anthony Copeland and East Chicago’s Urban Enterprise Association (ECUEA), are ready for businesses at the once-vacant Spanish-style Galleria Shops in East Chicago’s neighborhood called the “North Harbor.” The City of East Chicago in partnership with the ECUEA is preparing to welcome start-up business owners looking to locate. Unlike a traditional incubator that has multiple shared spaces.
A Ribbon Cutting is planned for Monday, April 24th at 10:30 am at 3724 Main Street, East Chicago, IN. East Chicago is transforming the Galleria shops in the North Harbor neighborhood of the city’s Indiana Harbor section into an incubator for start-up businesses. The city government is renovating the dated 1970s storefronts to have a more contemporary look as part of its ongoing redevelopment of North Harbor, near Lake Michigan.
“When we began talking about giving new life to the Galleria, I wanted to create a plan to repurpose the properties rather than tearing them down,” East Chicago Mayor Anthony Copeland said. “People have fond memories of those shops, which we hope will carry over to the new business incubator.”
The city’s plan is to convert the retail court into 10 separate 10,000-square-foot office spaces, each of which could be leased by a different startup business. It will keep the mature trees for shade and line the fronts with masonry and the interior courtyard with stone and stucco. “Our entrepreneurs need a place to set up shop in East Chicago,” Copeland said. “We are eager to get these offices completed so they can get started.”
“Excitement has been building up for these affordable retail and office spaces. The programming to help new startup businesses enter into the market is key to success. New businesses need affordability as they work their way to profitability.” stated Mayor Anthony Copeland. ECUEA staff commented “We are pleased to partner with the city to acquire and operate the Galleria Business Incubator. We have already received several calls from interested entrepreneurs, excited about the much-needed opportunity. ECUEA board of directors is committed to community and economic development throughout the entire city.”
The goal is to foster more small businesses, which employ about half of Indiana’s private workforce, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration. Renovating this dated 1970s storefront to have a more contemporary look is part of its ongoing redevelopment of North Harbor area, near Lake Michigan.
The Galleria Business incubator will offer reduced rent for a defined time period of two years. This incubator will offer business plan assistance, business training up to 4 hours, minor legal services, consulting and advice from established business owners, and joint marketing assistance.
East Chicago has been working the entire North Harbor neighborhood, including with increased, streetscaping, walkability and public space improvements along Main Street, Guthrie Street Broadway and Indiana Harbor Drive. The city’s goal is to combine a mixed-income neighborhood that connects with Lake Michigan and supports a variety of sustainable businesses.
Some of the Galleria Business Incubator Program Requirements.
Assistance will be provided as needed for meeting program requirements:
- Timely filing of business taxes
- Legal business entity in good standing with state of Indiana
- Business License with City of East Chicago
- Must be willing to have and maintain hours of onsite operations.
For more info on the ECUEA:
East Chicago Urban Enterprise Association, Inc.
Work: (219) 392-3660
Fax: (219) 392-3659
East Chicago has been working the entire North Harbor neighborhood, including with increased walkability, streetscaping and public space improvements along Main Street, Broadway, Guthrie Street and Indiana Harbor Drive. The hope is to revive it as a mixed-income neighborhood that connects with Lake Michigan and supports a variety of sustainable businesses.
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