South Bend selected to host historic preservation conference

Conference will explore city’s many adaptive reuse projects preserving industrial, manufacturing landmarks

South Bend’s dedication to saving historic places has helped the city attract a statewide gathering. Preserving Historic Places: Indiana’s Statewide Historic Preservation Conference will be held in South Bend, September 27-30.

The conference will bring approximately 250 attendees from around the state – including historic preservation professionals and advocates, architects, Realtors and urban planners – to explore many of the adaptive reuse projects preserving South Bend’s industrial and manufacturing legacy for the twenty-first century.

“South Bend took an early lead in adapting historic spaces for new use, including transforming the Indiana & Michigan Power Company into the successful Commerce Center in the 1980s” said Marsh Davis, president of Indiana Landmarks. “We look forward to showcasing the city as an inspiring example of the revitalizing impact of preservation.”

Plenary sessions will take place at the Scottish Rite in downtown South Bend and at the University of Notre Dame.

Tours and other events will highlight the West Washington Street Historic District, Tippecanoe Place, Palais Royale, and The Lauber Kitchen & Bar, a nineteenth-century sheet metal company transformed into a restaurant.

Mayor James Mueller is scheduled to welcome conference attendees at noon on September 28 at the Scottish Rite, 427 N. Main St. After lunch, Andrew Beckman, archivist at the Studebaker National Museum, and photographer Louis Sabo will present a photographic history of South Bend.

“Through our historic neighborhoods, parks, and downtown, we’re glad to have an opportunity to show how preservation has contributed to the city’s special character,” said Adam Toering, administrator of the Historic Preservation Commission of South Bend and Saint Joseph County.

On September 30, the conference moves to the University of Notre Dame with a plenary talk from 9 to 10:00 a.m. on preservation’s role in promoting sustainability by Steven Semes, director of the Michael Christopher Duda Center for Preservation, Resilience, and Sustainability. Following the talk, attendees may enjoy a tour of the Basilica of the Sacred Heart for an in-depth look at its religious, historic, and architectural significance.

The conference is open to the public. Registration is $200 per person and $125 per student, and includes all education sessions, a reception, a luncheon and two dinners. Register and get the full conference schedule at

The conference offers continuing education credits for architects, planners, and Realtors for certain sessions and workshops, with certification by AIA Indiana, American Society of Landscape Architects, and Indiana Professional Licensing Agency.

Preserving Historic Places: Indiana’s Statewide Historic Preservation Conference is staged by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, Division of Historic Preservation and Archaeology (DHPA), Indiana Landmarks, and Indiana University with support from the Saint Joseph County Council.

WHAT: Preserving Historic Places: Indiana’s Statewide Historic Preservation Conference

WHEN: September 27-30, 2022

WHERE: Various sites in South Bend


WHO: Indiana Landmarks, the Indiana Division of Historic Preservation and Archaeology, and Indiana University host the annual Preserving Historic Places Conference, with support from the National Park Service, Saint Joseph County Council, and the City of South Bend.


Media contacts:
Suzanne Stanis, Indiana Landmarks Vice President of Heritage Education, 317-639-4534 / 800-450-4534,

Danielle Kauffmann, Historic Structures Team Leader, Indiana Division of Historic Preservation & Archaeology, 317-232-0582,


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