VALPARAISO - A Michigan-based small craft distillery is moving forward with plans to open a new facility in Valparaiso. Our partners at The Times of Northwest Indiana report Journeyman Distillery is leasing part of the vacant ANCO property for storage of its range of liquors, including whiskey and other spirits.

The startup in Three Oaks, Michigan has seen its business grow, requiring a need for more storage space. The company saw an opportunity across state lines in Valparaiso.

“We’re excited to get moving here in Valpo,” said Bill Welter, found of Journeyman Distillery. “Once those barrels move, I wouldn’t want to see those move again expect when moving what’s inside into a bottle.”

The paper says, for now, the property will be used for storage, but Welter’s plan is broader. The next step would be to bottle and distribute their products from that location, which would require federal and state licensing. Beyond that, Welter told the publication, he’d like to open a pilot distillery, brewery, and restaurant.

The Times of Northwest Indiana says the distillery still needs to finalize its proposal to the city, including designs for the structure. A final redevelopment agreement is expected to be signed before the end of the year.

The ANCO property has sat vacant since the 1980s.