FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana’s NewsCenter) - How would you like a view of downtown Fort Wayne from your living room? There are new additions to the condos being built in the Anthony Wayne Building in downtown Fort Wayne—panoramic windows.
“This building in so many ways, has always been unattractive for offices. It’s always been hard to fill because the windows are all wrong. You almost had to stand up just to look outside,” said Mark Ulmschneider. “Somehow someone came along and understood what the potential was, and that’s remarkable. They don’t want to call these floor-to-ceiling windows, but I think that’s what they are. It just completely opens it up.”
The windows are 18 inches from the floor and expand wall-to-wall clear to the ceiling. With the original windows, tenants would have to stand up to see the view. Now tenants will be able to see the Allen County Courthouse and the Lincoln Tower while comfortably sitting in their new condo.
Mark Ulmschneider is very interested in buying a condo on the 13th floor. He said downtown living is very interesting and describes himself as not being the “suburban type”. He hasn’t purchased a condo yet, but he said the main thing that attracted him to these condos was the urban location.
“It’s unique. You’re close to the restaurants, the bars, the offices, the banks, the court. It’s just very very convenient,” Ulmschneider said. “The location is just indescribable. What city could you go into and get a condo with floor to ceiling windows overlooking a courthouse and the Lincoln tower? And the skyline? We're looking at fall colors. It's just gorgeous out there.”
When Ulmschnieder said “convenient,” he meant more than just location.
“As you get older, you don’t really want stairs, and right now we have steep stairs and lots of them…so this is ideal.”
The new condos could also count as a tax credit for the city. The State of Indiana Community Revitalization Enhancement District (CReEd) granted a 25 percent income tax credit as an incentive for downtown development. $1 million from the city's Neighborhood Stabilization program along with along with $11 million from private investors will go toward the $15 million renovation project.
The first floor will be used for retail space, and the second through fifth floors will be parking garages.
“We’re working on a pharmacy, grocery, deli, all those things that are not necessarily in downtown Fort Wayne today,” said John Nichols, Partner with RCI Development.
The sixth floor will converted to into seven condos that will target young professionals. The seventh floor on up, will be a mix of upscale one and two-bedroom condos and additional retail space. Floor plans range from 793 to 2053-sqaure-feet, and will feature energy efficient windows and heating and air conditioning units. Each condo also comes with two parking spaces in the garage.
Nichols said he thinks the main attraction is the view from the building. “You can see the windmills over in Ohio from up here on the 15th floor," Nichols said. But, he also agrees with Ulmschneider when it comes to location.
“It's in the heart of the city, close to the restaurants. It's just a great spot. And now with the windows in place, it's a dramatic view and totally changes the look and feel of the building, both on the inside and the outside of the building,” Nichols said.
The Anthony Wayne Building is two blocks from Headwaters Park, three blocks from Parkview Field and across the street from Friemann’s Square.
Around thirteen units have already been sold, including all four penthouses on the 15th floor. Ulmschneider said although realtors are holding a condo in the southwest corner of the 13th floor for him, he doesn’t have too much longer to decide because the condos are selling fast.
“Not everyone is fighting to be on the 13th floor, but on the other hand, they’ve been telling me that people have been taking the asking price which is unbelievable!”
Nichols said the panoramic windows on the 15th floor will be installed by Thanksgiving, and the condos will be complete and ready for move-in by April 2012.
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