Binding Agreement Ready On Final Piece Of Harrison Square

By Jeff Neumeyer

September 12, 2011 Updated Sep 12, 2011 at 6:17 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana's NewsCenter) --- Will the second time be the charm for the residential-retail component of the Harrison Square project?

Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry announced Monday afternoon that a binding agreement has been negotiated to get the final piece of the downtown development going.

There’ve been lots of stops and starts on what's known as "The Harrison".

But a new agreement may finally cause a sliver of land beyond the left-field wall at Parkview Field to be transformed.

Bank financing has been secured for an expected groundbreaking within 60 to 90 days on a four-story mixed-use complex to include retail shops, a bank branch, office space and 42 apartments.

Back in February, the Henry Administration said the project was a "go", but financing problems led to the latest in a series of snags.

Henry says the latest progress has generated interest for leasing on about half the apartments.

Mayor Tom Henry/(D) Fort Wayne: " Nothing breeds success like success, and I think the investors, the team itself including the bank, they all saw that Harrison Square, even in its current form, has been a tremendous success, and they want to be a part of it."

The terms of the contract were presented to the Fort Wayne Redevelopment Commission late Monday afternoon.

At the time of this report, it wasn’t clear when that body would vote on the agreement.

Some other property near the baseball stadium could be in for changes soon as well.

The city has purchased some homes along Ewing Street that will be knocked down, creating a staging area for contractors who will take 14 months to build "The Harrison".

The land could eventually host convenience stores, drug stores, or other businesses that are a good fit with Harrison Square, but the city says no long-term plans have been finalized.

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