FORT WAYNE - Greater Fort Wayne Inc. is celebrating what it calls a strong end to 2019. The group is touting improved talent attraction, more residents and a boost in economic development in Allen County.

The county added 691 residents in 2018, according to U.S. Census Bureau data released in April 2019. The numbers are a major milestone for the county, representing its highest single-year total since the Census Bureau began tracking net domestic migration in 1991.

GFW Inc. assisted companies that invested more than $139 million in Allen County during 2019. The organization says this assistance helped to generate 21 business expansions and relocations, 1,187 new jobs and $52 million in new annual payroll.

“Fort Wayne and Allen County are experiencing unprecedented momentum as we work together to continue to build a great community. Collaboration is critical, and our collective emphasis on being committed to enhancing the quality of life for residents and businesses is having a meaningful impact,” Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry said. “Job growth and retention, high-wage employment opportunities, and new private investments are occurring in our community. We’re committed to being focused on doing everything possible to ensure Fort Wayne and Allen County are positioned for success now and in the years ahead.”

The organization says the momentum will carry through 2020, with several major projects in Fort Wayne underway currently. The city says the projects represent a total investment of $681 million. These projects include:

  • Riverfront Development (Phases II and III).
  • Riverfront Promenade (mixed-use development on the Premier Riverfront property).
  • The Lofts at Headwaters Park.
  • Ruoff Mortgage Headquarters.
  • Electric Works (West Campus).
  • The Landing.
  • Boutique Hotel.
  • Lutheran Downtown Hospital.

“In today's economy, a community's quality of life is crucial. If we want to attract businesses and create jobs, we need to be a place where people want to live, and the numbers show Allen County is making remarkable strides," said John Urbahns, chief executive officer of GFW Inc. "We will continue working to build a nationally recognized economy here in Allen County, living out our core values of inclusivity, collaboration, and results.”

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