ST. JOSEPH -- Downtown St. Joseph will continue to see growth and development in the new year.

Community Development Director Nate Keller says the redevelopment of the old fire and village hall building across from the St. Joe Meat Market is already underway.

There's two portions of that building.  There' s the fire hall portion that has the large garage doors and then there's the village hall portion.  The fire hall portion will house a restaurant and the other portion will be more retail-focused.

Another big project that was recently approved is the Bad Habit Brewing expansion which will double its size by adding over 4,000 square feet of space with an event center.

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Keller says another project they are working on is Ash Street. It is an east-west road just north of Bad Habit that has residential properties with people living in the homes now, but the street is zoned commercial.

We've had some recent development interest in some of those properties.  Some of them have been purchased with the intent of converting those to commercial uses.

He says city leaders are also working on bringing a boutique hotel downtown.

It could be a renovation of a space or it could be a new development.  So really right now we're just in the beginning stages of looking at various different properties and having conversations with partners.

Keller says the biggest struggle St. Joseph has right now is there isn't a lot of vacant spaces available downtown, but they do have some redevelopment opportunities.

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