Neighborhood says Kroc Center has been positive - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

Neighborhood says Kroc Center has been positive

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The Kroc Center is meant to be a positive light for South Bend's Westside.

Now that a year has gone by, it's time to take stock.

Donna Myers bought Valet Laundry about a month before the Kroc Center opened in South Bend.

She says it's been exciting to see the facility grow as her business takes off.

"It's brought people down to this end of town who maybe were a little reluctant to come to this side of town," says Myers.

It's not just the Kroc Center, Myers says her other business less than a mile away it benefiting from other growth.

"We're just by the new Ignition Park so this side of town is really getting exciting. There's a lot of growth happening. We're very excited about it," says Myers.

Others in the community told us the Kroc Center has really added some beauty to their neighborhood and a positive influence on youngsters.

Including Myers's daughter whose four young kids enjoy all the Center has to offer.

"It's a really nice facility and it's good for your kids. I feel safe with my kids there," says Alyssa Myers whose children use the Kroc Center.

The Kroc Center is in Common Councilmember Henry Davis Jr's district.

He says overall, it has been a plus for the neighborhood.

He says it's brought attention to a part of town that's been ignored in the past.

"You're talking more traffic, more people paying attention to the area that they're in and that's a great thing because now you can have a conversation about how you can develop the area that has been neglected for so many years," says Davis.

Davis says there are also some challenges.

He says in talking with folks who live near the Kroc Center, he's found they haven't gotten much use out of it.

"The Kroc Center showed up in a low economic, depressed area obviously to give those in the area an uplift in life and obviously it's not working to that level," says Davis.

Davis says he'd maybe like to see free memberships offered to kids who live near the Kroc Center.

He says it's an issue he's looking forward to addressing in the near future for his district.

The folks who run the Kroc Center say they strive to give access to as many people as possible, no matter their income or their circumstances.

The Center says 10 to 15 percent of members are on scholarship.

There are also free programs for non-members, like a homework club and a literacy class.

Right now there are some openings for scholarships. To find out how to apply, click:

http://www.mykroc.org/membership/scholarship.php

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