Fort Wayne Mayor Graham Richard today presented an update on the City’s “Invest Fort Wayne” initiative. The goal, which was launched in February, is $1 billion of private investment in the City over the next three years. Mayor Richard’s comments were made at a meeting of the Northeast Indiana Commercial Brokers Property Exchange.
Since January 1, 2005, more than $300 million of private investments have been announced. A few highlights include:
*$75 million Verizon fiber-to-the-premises project
*$35 million Fort Wayne Newspapers expansion
*$8 million Menards facility at Southtown Centre
*$9 million expansion at Ottenweller Company
*$2.5 million expansion at Fort Wayne Metals
*$2 million expansion at Ceruti’s
“Urban investment is critical for Fort Wayne to enhance economic growth and development,” said Mayor Richard. “Fort Wayne is in a great position to be a leader in creating investment opportunities. Making innovative investments will help us retain and gain jobs.”
Mayor Richard also announced that City leaders will hold additional meetings with investors in the coming weeks to discuss the benefits of investing in Fort Wayne. Two key programs are the Downtown Community Revitalization Enhancement District (CRED) and the Urban Enterprise Zone.
The downtown CRED district allows the City to capture increased sales and income tax dollars generated by new investment downtown. It also allows for a 25% investment tax credit for qualified investment that occurs downtown.
The Fort Wayne Urban Enterprise Zone is a four square mile area located in central Fort Wayne. It is a targeted area for revitalization, job creation and improvements in economic and social conditions. Qualified businesses and residents receive special tax benefits by reinvesting in the zone area.
A new enterprise zone tax incentive was passed by the Indiana General Assembly earlier this year. It provides a 10-year tax deduction on all new real and personal property in enterprise zones. The deduction must be approved by the Allen County Auditor and is only available on the increased value of property.
“These incentive programs make Fort Wayne more competitive in attracting private investment,” said Mayor Richard. “We are making progress in revitalizing downtown and the urban core.”
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