Local Real Estate Broker starts Rally for Centlivre Village restoration
Commercial Real Estate Broker (CBRE / Sturges) and former candidate for City Clerk, Zach Bonahoom has begun a rally to raise the funds necessary for the purchase and restoration of Centlivre Village Apartments. The complex, located in the heart of Fort Wayne, just north of downtown (2700 block of Westbrook Drive, 46805) has been abandoned since 2007, with just one building barely remaining occupied. (See Ryan Elijah’s In your corner report here: https://youtu.be/1ppvfl9wGCE)
Owners of the complex have attempted multiple times to obtain government grants or city intervention for renovation, none of which they received Additionally, multiple failing attempts have been made to sell the 17.5 acre distressed property, which is currently listed for sale at $3.5 million by BND Commercial. These attempts now date back several years, and the neighbors have grown accustomed to the eyesore.
“There is no reason a once magnificent property in this part of town should be in such poor shape.” Bonahoom said of Centlivre, “It’s clear the only remedy is private investment, and in this part of Fort Wayne, that should be the only thing necessary. We shouldn’t need government intervention here.”
Bonahoom also notes that the abandoned complex buildings are, “solid,” made up of red brick exterior and concrete between the floors. “It would be a waste to tear them down.”
Bonahoom is spearheading the effort to raise $5 million (via Rally.org a crowd funding conduit), which is less than half what some estimates say it will take to purchase and renovate the complex. He stressed the importance of a less expensive, but still centrally located alternative to downtown living especially for seniors and/or those just graduating from post-secondary education.
Bonahoom’s possible vision includes a portion of the complex reserved for senior housing, while the rest would be used for a mixture of condos or apartments. The first floor of several buildings would be converted to mini-grocery stores and/or a convenience store, as well as potential for restaurant(s) and other small retail.
“What we have here is a small town, right on the Citilink line, and nearly walking distance to downtown. There are many possibilities.” Bonahoom commented, “It will be a long process to raise the money and renovate but I am in it for the long haul and welcome any contributors. Even if we have to renovate one apartment at a time. This place can be great again.”
In addition to 495, one, two and three bedroom apartments, the complex features a defunct pool, and basketball court.