From Indiana News Center:

By Jeff Neumeyer
Story Published: Aug 26, 2008 at 7:59 PM EDT
Story Updated: Aug 26, 2008 at 9:35 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, IN (Indiana’s NewsCenter) — The Georgia based company that is overseeing the Harrison Square condominium project says it will roll out a brand new marketing effort next week, to try and get the troubled housing complex out of the doldrums.

Jim Irwin with Barry Real Estate out of Atlanta says several new things will be introduced September 2nd, including the fact that a Fort Wayne marketing firm called “One Lucky Guitar” will be producing a new Internet web site to promote the condominiums that are not being sold as quickly as expected.

Irwin says there is no way anyone could have anticipated the tough economy that is causing the condo sales to lag.

But he reiterated the units will get built.

In early July, Barry Real Estate CEO Chris Shoen came to Fort Wayne and suggested a big announcement about the start of construction on the condos would be coming soon.

The President of city council, Tom Didier, says he is waiting for that promise to be delivered on.

“They told us point blank at the council table, that they were going to build the condominiums. They’ve not given me a reason to distrust them yet. I believe Barry Real Estate should come through for what they offered to do, they should come through on this project,” said Didier.

City Redevelopment Director Greg Leatherman tells Indiana’s NewsCenter, he believes it is probably no longer realistic to think the condos will be finished by the contractual deadline of June 1st, 2009.

But Leatherman says if substantial progress toward completion is evident next June, andcity attorneys advise that it’s okay to amend the contract agreement, an extension on the completion date may be worked out.

Scott Spaulding (What’s Going Down(Town)) points out that the logo on The Harrison (the Condo/Retail Building) website has changed from Martin Goldstine Knapke to Coldwell Banker Roth Wehrly.  In the City Council meeting on May 21st 2008, Chris Schoen said:

…So we really didn’t start that process with Bill [Martin Goldstine Knapke], until 45 days back let’s say.  In that period of time we’ve been getting our marketing materials together, getting our sales pitch down, if you will, and we’re now at the point where we’re really beginning to convert all those reservations and expressions of interest to hard sales contracts…

I find it curious that if the problems are all economy-related that a change in the seller would be needed.  But, remember back to June 16th when the new campaign Chris Schoen spoke aboute was rolled out?

To sum up the feelings of the local blogosphere and others in the community, “This was the best you could come up with?”  And since then, no new marketing efforts have been visible.  Let’s hope that “One Lucky Guitar” has better luck.


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