Work to begin at site of future mixed-use development by Headwaters Park

Local News

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) — More housing and commercial space is coming to Fort Wayne.

The city of Fort Wayne on Wednesday announced that site work on The Lofts at Headwaters Park would begin in January.

The “Lofts” will be a six-story mixed-use building that will include 217 apartments, 15 townhomes, 12,000 square feet of commercial space and a 651-space parking garage. The project is bounded by four streets: Duck, Clinton, Superior and Barr.

The site work will include the removal of soil 12 feet in depth across the entire 2.86-acre site. Trees around the entire site will be removed, but the project plans call for 71 new trees on the project site.

The Lofts at Headwaters Park project map

The Fort Wayne Redevelopment Commission contracted with Bunn Construction to complete the soil removal and site preparation work.

“This environmental remediation and soil removal is a significant step in building the Lofts at Headwaters Park,” said Nancy Townsend, Director of the City’s Community Development Division. “This project will help attract new development and investment, which is important to our downtown area.”

The project will receive an investment from Indianapolis-based developer, Barrett & Stokely, of over $67 million. The same group also invested in The Riverfront at Promenade Park — an $87 million project — which is currently under construction at the corner of Harrison and Superior Streets across from Promenade Park.

“As a City Councilman and as the Executive Director of the Headwaters Park Alliance, I support this transformational project,” said Councilman Geoff Paddock. “Headwaters Park will be open and accessible during the site work. Our robust and exciting festival season will also continue. We look forward to hosting the community and visitors at this beautiful downtown park throughout 2022 and beyond.”

Nearby Club Soda will remain open during construction and can be accessed through the existing entrance facing north toward Headwaters Park. Free parking for the restaurant will be available at the parking lot at the southeast corner of Superior and Clinton streets.

Once the soil removal and site work is completed in the spring, construction on The Lofts at Headwaters Park is expected to begin in the summer of 2022. During this time, certain lanes, roads and sidewalks in the area will but shut down however detour routes will be planned.

“We have been meeting for well over a year now working out the details with all the festival organizers on details of where people gonna park how are people going to get their signage and those sorts of things,” said Townsend. “Luckily and happily, the new parking garage that the same developers building at the Riverfront Promenade project over by Promenade Park, that parking garage will be open.”

The Riverfront Promenade parking garage is set to open in mid-January, opening up hundreds of spots in time for festival season.

The city started looking for more downtown living opportunities after a housing study released in 2021 indicated there was a demand for more downtown housing. Townsend said it comes as Indiana is the only state to see positive population migration growth, with two-thirds of that migration settling in Allen County.

“That kind of tells you the magnet we are for this entire Midwest region,” said Townsend. “People from California, Chicago, even parts of the southeast are relocating to Fort Wayne. We offer a lot, whether you’re a millennial, whether you’re a single, a middle-aged person or retirees. We have a lot of empty nesters coming to Fort Wayne and living here.”

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