GE closer to selling campus
In 'negotiation phase' with potential buyer for property
By Rosa Salter Rodriguez | The Journal Gazette
General Electric has narrowed the field of those submitting proposals for its former Fort Wayne campus to one player, a company spokesman confirmed Monday.
“We are still in the negotiation phase, and I can’t divulge who it is just yet,” said Matt Conkrite, GE’s marketing communications manager. “We are making good progress.”
GE officials previously said about four proposals had come forward for the nearly 32-acre campus and its 1.2 million square feet of building space along both sides of Broadway just south of downtown.
Officials had said they expected to be able to select a proposal by the end of September.
With that deadline come and gone, City Councilman Geoff Paddock, D-5th, and convener of the GE Campus Coalition, said the delay should not be seen as negative.
He said he had not heard who is interested, but added, “That a developer is forthcoming is a very positive sign.”
He added, “If it takes a little extra time, I understand that.”
The coalition and Greater Fort Wayne Inc. have been working with GE in securing a developer. Rachel Lott, spokeswoman for Greater Fort Wayne, said talks continue.
“As far as I know, we don’t have anything we could share at this time,” she said.
“We would defer to (GE officials) in regards to the status of what they are doing.”
Conkrite said an announcement about the future of the property could come in a matter of “a few days to several weeks.”
In May, CBRE, a commercial real estate company in Indianapolis, listed the property and later marketed it online and in a 27-page sales document as “An Iconic Redevelopment Opportunity.”
The campus, with some of its 17 buildings dating to the late 1800s and early 1900s, once employed as many as 10,000 people. The last jobs were eliminated in 2014.