Purchase of the old Southtown Target could spur more growth on south side

Lifeline Data Centers purchased the old Southtown Target building at an auction.

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – It’s the big break that community leaders say will create a domino effect.  Attracting more businesses to open up shop on the city’s southeast side.  Officials at Lifeline Data Centers, an Indianapolis based company, say they’ll be making multi million dollar renovations to the old Target.

The building near the intersection of U.S. 27 and Anthony Boulevard has sat vacant for nearly a decade.  After years of sitting at a standstill, one community leader says he never lost hope in revitalizing this area.

“It has been frustrating and most certainly devastating,” Chairman of the Southeast Side Business Advisory Group John Dortch said.

Seeing things like Southtown Mall and Target disappear has been difficult for community leader John Dortch.  When Mayor Tom Henry appointed him Chairman of the Southeast Side Business Advisory Group a few years ago, he and others made it their mission to bring businesses and jobs back to the area.

“Our focus has been on something that would create jobs.  Another thing is a hotel, sit down restaurants, and a medical center.  Parkview has moved in that direction.

To see the for sale or lease sign disappear off the old Target, Dortch says we’re headed in the right direction.  Within the next six years, Lifeline Data Centers – a location provider for companies’ computer servers – will create up to 100 jobs.  Paying anywhere from $72,000 to $100,000 a year.

“It has been our focus our concentration.  So, it has been a great thing to see happen.”

Dortch says the advisory group has other projects in the works too.

“We have talked with several hotels, restaurants like Chili’s and Halls.  We are hoping to eventually get something going.  You’ve got to be patient and it will happen.”

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