Ruoff moving closer toward downtown headquarters
By Rosa Salter Rodriguez | The Journal Gazette
Ruoff Home Mortgage, which has hinted for months that it might put its headquarters in downtown Fort Wayne, is apparently moving forward with those plans.
John Perlich, spokesman for Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry, confirmed today in an e-mail that city officials are "having ongoing discussions" with the Fort Wayne-based home mortgage lender.
He said no agreements are in place. But he added the site in which Ruoff is interested is the vacant lot at the southwest corner of Ewing Street and West Jefferson Boulevard.
The location is across from Parkview Field and in front of Cityscape Flats. Most recently, the property was used as a construction staging area for the Cityscape project.
Bill Brown, president of the Downtown Improvement District, said city officials have been hearing talk about Ruoff's potential move for several months, but generally "no specifics."
That was confirmed by City Councilman Geoff Paddock, D-5th District, who added the move "would be a great thing for downtown."
The buzz has circulated since December when Ruoff had $5.88 million in tax incentives approved by the Indiana Economic Development Corp. Company officials said last year that moving would bring hundreds of workers to downtown.
Ruoff officials did not respond Thursday to requests for elaboration on the company's plans and timetable.
According to the company's website, Ruoff has Fort Wayne lending centers on Dupont Road and Pointe Inverness Way and a corporate office at 1700 Magnavox Way off Illinois Road.
There also are lending centers in several other communities in northeast Indiana, including Bluffton, Columbia City Elkhart and Warsaw.
Ruoff also has offices in Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky and Florida and is licensed in most other states.
Recently, the company won naming rights to the former Klipsch Music Center in Noblesville. Ruoff also sponsored the winning car in last year's Indianapolis 500 and is sponsoring a car driven by Carlos Munoz for Team Andretti in this year's race.
Perlich said city officials see Ruoff's potential presence as "another positive investment for our community and region."
The city continues "to experience growth and private businesses wanting to be part of the successful revitalization efforts in the heart of Fort Wayne," Perlich's email said.