Downtown Housing May Expand: Apartments Envisioned Near Parkview Field

By Jeff Neumeyer

December 10, 2012 Updated Dec 10, 2012 at 8:25 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (www.incnow.tv) --- Don't look now; the City of Fort Wayne is marketing more residential living options near Parkview Field downtown.

The city Redevelopment Commission was set to take an important vote on the matter Monday afternoon.

A proposal involves construction of new apartments along Ewing Street and Fairfield Avenue very close to the downtown baseball stadium.

The city has negotiated options to buy 16 parcels of land along Fairfield and Ewing, four acres in total, for $1.8 million.

The redevelopment commission members are being asked to endorse appraisals on the land, before the city would go ahead with purchases of the properties.

Then the city would solicit bids from developers on building more than 100 apartment units on the newly acquired land.

They would be less expensive units than those being rented in "The Harrison", which is just beyond the left field wall of Parkview Field.

" The job of the commission is to eliminate blight to increase the tax base in the area of the City of Fort Wayne. We've done that already with The Harrison significantly, we believe that this is just a continuation of that elimination of blight and the increase in the tax base, even if the upfront cost to acquire the land is higher than what it's actually valued at right now," said Ft. Wayne Redevelopment Director Greg Leatherman.

He says the city has options to buy the land at prices that are higher than what the land will likely be appraised at.

He defends that, by saying the property tax revenues from the apartment project that is envisioned will be a big boost from the taxes being paid on that land now.

The land purchases could happen as early as March.

It’s hoped construction might start sometime next year.

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