March 31, 2014 – Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry officially opened the new Envision Fort Wayne Center, 916 S. Calhoun St. The Center is a downtown storefront that will provide citizens with ways to learn about and contribute to community projects such as Riverfront Fort Wayne and the Downtown Fort Wayne Plan 2020 Update.
“Fort Wayne is on the cutting-edge for a community our size to have this outstanding center for public engagement,” said Mayor Henry. “It will provide an unprecedented way for citizens to engage with government and the community.”
A grant from the Knight Foundation is covering the costs for the rent, utilities, furnishings and equipment at the Envision Fort Wayne Center. City Planning Department employees will staff the Center and discuss ideas with visitors Tuesdays 2-6 p.m., Thursdays 11 a.m.-3 p.m. and Fridays 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Additional hours will be added during downtown festivals and events.
Currently, the Envision Fort Wayne Center is filled with displays about riverfront development. Educational information about development opportunities and constraints, river water quality, river history and successful riverfronts in other communities is all available for the public to see. Throughout the riverfront study process, the displays will change and citizens will have opportunities to express opinions about possible riverfront concepts. Citizens may stop in any time the Center is open or schedule a time for their group to visit by emailing
“The Envision Fort Wayne Center is an ideal venue for gathering input from the public regarding our riverfront work,” said Pam Holocher, deputy director of planning and policy. “The Center will also have many other uses, including housing a summer internship program for urban design and architecture students and serving as a continual ‘open house’ allowing citizens to connect with City government.”
March 17, 2014 - Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry and Parks Director Al Moll in cooperation with the Youth Sports Advisory Committee have received the community assessment and market-potential study for building on Fort Wayne’s reputation as a youth-sports destination. The study provides recommendations for facilities, organizational structure and support, and youth sports marketing and branding, both locally and regionally.
Henry, Moll and the committee will evaluate the findings and release their recommendations in a separate announcement later this year.
“This study affirms that Fort Wayne is truly a destination for youth sports yet offers opportunities for our residents,” Mayor Henry said. “I look forward to reviewing the recommendations more closely with the advisory committee and identifying initiatives that will enhance what we have and create new ways to engage local youth and families from across the Midwest and country.”
Aquarius Sports and Entertainment of Gaithersburg, Md., and Victus Advisors of Park City, Utah, evaluated the existing youth sports community through surveys, focus groups, interviews and a public meeting last year. Additionally they were charged with identifying opportunities to increase Fort Wayne’s market potential.
Highlights of the recommendations are:
*An outdoor multisport field complex with 12 to 18 fields for soccer, lacrosse, rugby and field hockey with synthetic turf, lighting, locker rooms and a championship field with bleacher seating and lighting.
*A new or expanded baseball and softball complex with eight or more fields.
*Leverage existing programs and operational infrastructure to create a regional adaptive-sports hub with the potential for national reach to serve athletes with disabilities.
*A new sports commission with a board of directors and full-time executive director focused on youth sports. The report recommends the yet-to-be-formed commission to enhance local youth sports through attracting regional events and developing new commission-specific events, building Fort Wayne’s reputation for youth sports, and creating a youth sports foundation to serve children from low-income households and adaptive sports participants.
Marketing and branding:
*Position Fort Wayne as the premier regional youth sports destination through the unique combination of facilities, proximity to other Midwestern cities, affordable lodging, family-friendly attractions and the community’s reputation for Hoosier hospitality.
“The Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation Department is excited about being a partner in growing the Fort Wayne youth sports market. Some of these suggestions fit squarely with Parks’ mission of providing facilities and programs that enhance the local quality of life,” Director Moll said. “Others, such as the potential for a sports commission, are better suited for other organizations. Either way, Parks was pleased to be involved in this study and look at how we can better serve youth through sports.”
Legacy Fort Wayne funds paid for the $115,000 study.
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"Today (Oct. 28, 2010) is a good day for the people of Fort Wayne," said Mayor Tom Henry. "This settlement will strengthen Fort Wayne and better position us for economic growth. Not only does it provide an important income stream, it ensures that I&M continues to provide quality service to the area."