Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry says Amazon’s decision to locate a third fulfillment center in Allen County, this one with a commitment for nearly 1,000 jobs, was fueled by investment in quality of place amenities and infrastructure improvements. Specifically, Henry says an upgrade at Fort Wayne International Airport is helping a vision become reality. “Some time ago, we made the investment to build runways that would accommodate 747s with the hope that we would be able to become a cargo hub someday and that’s essentially what’s happening with Amazon,” said Henry, who notes the retail giant already has two centers near the airport.
Henry talked about the Amazon deal and numerous other projects underway in Fort Wayne on this weekend’s edition of Inside INdiana Business with Gerry Dick.
Amazon confirmed plans that had been rumored for months, announcing the intent to build a 630,000-square-foot fulfillment center on a site along U.S. 30. “Project Mastodon” is Amazon’s 10th fulfillment center in Indiana and the first to feature advanced robotics technology.
The Amazon project is the latest in a series of big projects underway in Fort Wayne, including the $300 million Electric Works mixed-use development, a new downtown headquarters for STAR Financial Bank, massive riverfront development and several residential additions.
“A lot of these were part of our strategic plan for downtown development,” said Henry, who believes planning and strong support from the private sector have the city positioned well for a post-pandemic world.