SOUTH BEND — Under pressure to vote Tuesday night or lose the proposed data center development at St. Joe Farm, the St. Joseph County Council voted 6-3 to approve the industrial rezoning of more than 900 acres at the site.

The decision came at the end of a four-and-a-half-hour-long meeting where several Granger residents continued to voice their concerns and where council members sought answers to lingering questions.

At the meeting’s start, council member Amy Drake sought to return the rezoning back to committee so that the council would have at least another month to deal with questions.

But Mike Danch, a local consultant who represents the unnamed developer who wants to build a data center, said that if the council didn’t vote on the rezoning Tuesday, they’d seek another site elsewhere. It reminded some of a similar threat in the past year, that the council would risk losing GM’s battery plant deal near New Carlisle if they didn’t approve a major bond to pay for infrastructure.

“I don’t see what’s so unreasonable about waiting 30 days,” council member Joe Thomas said.
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