Erin Blasko | August 21, 2020
Two decades ago, the area south of the University of Notre Dame, encompassing Notre Dame Avenue and South Bend’s Northeast Neighborhood, was less than welcoming. Years of disinvestment, combined with the loss of many longtime residents to the nearby suburbs, had left many homes empty or abandoned. Curbs and sidewalks crumbled from age and neglect. Weeds grew in empty lots. Crime sprouted. Property values plummeted.
The Five Points intersection at Eddy Street, Corby Boulevard and South Bend Avenue, once the epicenter of off-campus student activity, languished. Gone were the old hangouts. The grocery store. The thrift shop. Left were vacant buildings and empty lots. A former destination reduced to another point on the map.
“It was aging. The housing stock was aging,” says Rev. Edward “Monk” Malloy, CSC, ’63, ’67M.A., ’69M.A., then the president of the University. “The neighborhood was not a center of crime, but there were pockets of crime. It had some good housing, but not enough. It was not the kind of place, when new faculty and staff arrived, where they wanted to live.”
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