New condos and apartments in downtown Fort Wayne attract generations young and old
By Mary Anne Gates | The News-Sentinel
Recently built condos and apartments offer a variety of options for anyone considering living downtown.
“There is a positivity surrounding downtown,” said Breck Johnson, broker with BND Commercial and BND Development, 1021 S Calhoun St. “New restaurants are coming downtown. It's the whole thing about being able to live and play in downtown. You don't have to get in your car and go anywhere, you can walk to art centers, to dinner or to a ball game. You can live, you can play and you can work in our downtown.”
For example, AWB, 203 E. Berry St features 28 residential condominiums and some outstanding views.
“I think the views of downtown are one of the main reasons people are drawn to AWB. It is in the heart of downtown,” she said.
“Looking northeast there is a view of the (Dr.) Martin Luther King (Memorial) Bridge. The courthouse is visible on the west side of the building. Looking southeast, Ohio windmills are visible on a clear day,” Johnson said. Adding, “you can see a lot of them from up there.”
Other landmarks visible from AWB include Freimann Square, the History Center, and Citizens Square.
The one- and two-bedroom condo sizes vary greatly from nearly 800 to almost 3,000 square feet.
“Each unit is so different. They are just beautiful condos,” Johnson said.
The 15-story building features a mix use of residential and commercial space.
Several floors are devoted to commercial space including the first, sixth, seventh and 11th floors.
Additionally, the second through the fifth floors are devoted to parking. Each condo has two parking spaces, Johnson said.
A mix of empty nesters, singles and young professionals make AWB their home, she said.
Condos at the AWB occasionally come on the market and prices can vary greatly depending on size. A two-bedroom two-bath condo is available for $460,000, Johnson said.
Meanwhile, the Harrison, 301 W. Jefferson Blvd., offers one- and two-bedroom apartments.
“It's a very upscale property and it has great views of both (Parkview Field, home of the TinCaps baseball team) and downtown. It's at the center of all the action with all the renovations that are happening downtown,” said Michelle Luce, BND representative.
BND serves as the property manager for the Harrison, she said.
The 43 apartments at the Harrison are spread over the third and fourth floors. Units feature granite countertops and stainless-steel appliances. The first and second floors are devoted to retail and office space, respectively.
The apartments vary in size from 655 to 1,554 square feet. Monthly rents vary from $930 to $2,000.
Additionally, an amenity suite overlooking the TinCaps baseball diamond is available to residents and their guests.
Currently, the Harrison is fully occupied. “When there is a vacancy we begin notifying people who are interested,” Luce said.
Johnson said, “I believe when the AWB and the Harrison showed that downtown could handle people living, playing and working here, other developers thought they could do other projects and be successful.
“I think the success of downtown is because of these two projects,” she said. “You had to start somewhere. Both of these projects did so well and so quickly that other things started to catch on.”
“I look to see more apartments and condos in downtown … It's an exciting time to be downtown,” Johnson said.
Another place to live downtown is Cityscape Flats, 1250 Ewing St.
Resident Jon Steiner said, “I have wanted to live downtown for several years … I just thought it would be neat. It took my wife a little longer to come around to the idea,” said Steiner, who works at Lake City Bank on West Jefferson Boulevard. He has lived downtown for a couple of months.
“It's really fun to get dressed up for an event and not get in your car. We can walk down to the Embassy Theatre or the Grand Wayne Center. When the event is done you just walk back to where you live rather than getting into the parking garage,” he said.
“We are empty nesters, and had a chance to move from our northeast area condo. We both really like living downtown … I like walking around downtown,” Steiner said.
Besides strolling in the immediate downtown area, other nearby destinations beckon.
“Last Saturday we walked to the zoo. It's 2.5 miles via Ewing to Wells (streets). We spent about three hours at the zoo. Afterward, we walked back home and had lunch on the way. So, that was kind of fun,” he said.