DOJO Creative, a website design and development company previously based in Michigan, is renovating and redeveloping the former Gene’s Camera Store in downtown Mishawaka. The company says it is on track to wrap up the first floor of the three-phase renovation project in November.
The nearly 3,000-square-foot historic office building was constructed in 1880 and purchased by DOJO in 2021. DOJO says the building is being completely overhauled, including framing two new offices, installing new front-facing windows, relocating an ADA-accessible bathroom, updating electrical wiring, and removal of asbestos tile.
DOJO says the project also includes exploratory demolition of the façade to assess potential preservation of the building’s brick.
“DOJO Creative is excited to join the downtown Mishawaka community, restoring vitality to a long-struggling structure while ushering new, skilled jobs into northern Indiana — and keeping them here,” co-owner Douglas Elder said. “Choosing to base our operations in Mishawaka brings us closer to the clients and communities we serve. Our relocation is part product of our continued growth and a commitment to joining the city’s ongoing push for economic development.”
Tuvia Poliskin of T2 Design + Architecture is masterminding the redevelopment effort. Poliskin also designed River Rock Apartments, which are also located in downtown Mishawaka.
The company, which employs about six people, serves local and regional organizations, including nonprofits, educational institutions, and medical groups, among others. DOJO was established in 2018 by Elder and Josh Harmon.
DOJO says the building’s façade is scheduled for completion in December. The building’s second-floor remodel is expected to finish in December 2023.