Orchestra to Get New HQ Due to Electric Works
The new economic development agreement announced this week for the Electric Works project brings with it a surprise benefit for another Fort Wayne organization. Tax incentives related to the project will be used for the development of a new headquarters for the Fort Wayne Philharmonic Orchestra.
During a news conference announcing the new deal for Electric Works, Chuck Surack, founder and chief executive officer of Fort Wayne-based Sweetwater, says the former Aunt Millie’s bakery building in the city’s downtown will be transformed into the orchestra’s new HQ.
“The big building, the east third of it, we’re going to make the new home of the Philharmonic Orchestra. I really want the orchestra to be downtown,” Surack said. “We’ve got a lot of work to do, and it’s not completely over the finish line yet, but this project being tied together a little bit gets the first start and first tax base going toward it.”
Our partners at WPTA-TV report Surack acquired the Perfection Bakeries building in 2018 after the bakery ceased operations.
An allocation of $7.5 million in New Markets Tax Credits will be used for the project. The funding comes from UACD, an affiliate of Cross Street Partners. Cross Street Partners is part of RTM Ventures, which is co-developing Electric Works.
In a statement to WPTA, Embassy Theatre Chief Marketing Officer Carly Myers said the Philharmonic will still perform at the Embassy despite the new headquarters location.
“The Embassy is still the performance home for the Fort Wayne Philharmonic,” said Myers. “However, their offices are not located in our building. This seems like an exciting development for their team and musicians to move into an iconic space in downtown Fort Wayne. We anticipate seeing them and their patrons in our theater as usual once we move past the gathering restrictions of the pandemic.”