Cityscape Flats plan changing

July 27th, 2016

14 rowhouses to be built, sold to individual buyers

ROSA SALTER RODRIGUEZ | The Journal Gazette

When Scott Sorensen, partner in Domo Development LLC, was planning the Cityscape Flats development just west of Parkview Field in downtown Fort Wayne, the idea was for 177 rental units – including studio, one- and two-bedroom apartments and rowhouses.

But now the project has changed course – 14 rowhouses will be for sale to individual buyers, Sorensen, a Domo partner said.

The proposed change came to light in an application to the Fort Wayne Planning Commission asking to change the site’s development plan by altering property lines for the rowhouses.

The proposal will have a public hearing at 6 p.m. Aug. 8 in Room 35 of Citizens Square, 200 E. Berry St.

Sorensen said the rowhouses will be along West Brackenridge Street on the south side of the project. The three-bedroom units will have around 1,800 square feet and be marketed at $270,000 to $290,000, he said.

The developers changed course when they were approached by people who said they’d like to buy, not rent, a rowhouse unit, Sorensen said. He said they included “a couple of partners” in the project.

Fifteen people have indicated interest in the homes and about 90 are on a list of prospective apartment tenants, he said.

“At first, it was ‘Why upset the applecart?’ but it made sense to do this,” Sorensen said of the switch, adding, “banks are on board as well.”

Sales of the homes would be to individuals, not to investors who plan to rent the homes to others. A homeowners’ association will likely be formed for the rowhouse owners, but the homes will not be sold as condominiums, Sorensen said.

Asked whether potential buyers might have trouble securing a mortgage because there are no comparably priced rowhomes in the area, Sorensen said, “We don’t believe so.” He said potential buyers might be able to put a substantial amount of money down to make for less of a risk for lenders.

The homes might be ready for sale by next spring, with the apartments finished by late June, Sorensen said. That is also a change, in that when the $27 million project had its groundbreaking in September, officials indicated the rowhouses would likely be the final phase of construction.

Sorensen said changes being made for the rowhouse units are upgrades to luxury-level finishes. The project’s construction manager is Weigand Construction.

“There’s been a lot of demand” for Cityscape Flats, he said. “It’s a great location and there’s been talk of other things coming,” such as the proposed downtown arena.

“This is a chance to get in on the ground floor,” he said.