The City of Fort Wayne recently hosted a Southeast Area Development Strategy event to begin creating a first-ever development strategy to serve as a guide for the future of the southeast area. A special thank you to each person who provided valuable input as we move forward with this exciting initiative.
The plan will explore new and infill development opportunities and serve as a guide for housing and commercial redevelopment in the area. The strategy is a logical next step as part of the Plan-it Allen! process to develop a joint comprehensive land-use plan for the City and Allen County.
The program kicked off with positive news about the housing and retail markets in southeast Fort Wayne. Zimmerman/Volk Associates, Inc. recently completed a Southeast Housing Market Potential Study, which examined how the City and developers can work together to rebuild and revitalize urban core neighborhoods.
The housing study shows there is a demand and capacity for housing in southeast Fort Wayne. The study also outlines specific population, geographic and income examples that provide developers an opportunity to explore new forms of development to meet the demand. Forty-five neighborhoods were within the study area, which included Calhoun Street to the west, the St. Marys and Maumee rivers to the north, and the city limits to the east and south.
An example of positive housing plans is Renaissance Pointe, which calls for nearly 400 new homes and the rehabilitation of more than 100 existing homes in the area of Creighton Avenue, Pontiac Street, Hanna Street, and South Anthony Boulevard. The development is scheduled to begin this fall, with model units to be constructed in spring 2007.
The City’s Redevelopment
Department reported on the 2004 Metro Edge Southeast Retail Market Study that shows southeast Fort Wayne has higher retail potential than typical zip codes in the Allen County area. Advantages for southeast include significant buying power and positive neighborhood trends. The study also indicated that although the southeast quadrant has lower median income levels, its concentrated buying power is comparable to the other three quadrants in the City.
There is positive action in southeast Fort Wayne. We are using innovative techniques to develop more housing and retail opportunities for residents. We look forward to continuing our work with investors, businesses, neighborhood leaders, churches, and schools to make the southeast quadrant the best it can be.