FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – A landmark Fort Wayne shopping center, the 90,000 square foot Marketplace of Canterbury, is on the market. Local real estate auction marketing firm, the Steffen Group, is accepting private bids until April 28. The following day, the top two bidders will go head-to-head in a final auction at their office.
Steffen Group said the sale of the 14-acre Marketplace of Canterbury will be competitive. That’s largely because it’s the home of Piere’s Entertainment Center, one of the Northeast Indiana’s largest entertainment venues.
“It’s probably one of the largest commercial auctions to take place in Fort Wayne in recent years,” said Brandon Steffen, president of the Steffen Group.
Marketplace of Canterbury was owned by local businessman Stan Liddell, who died in 2013. Liddell’s estate initially tried selling the plaza for for $3.9 million, but no one took up the offer. That’s when they reached out to the Steffen Group for help.
The owner of Dark Horse Tattoo, one of the shopping center’s tenants, said it’s about time someone picks up the property.
“Everything is kind of falling in,” said Matt Carmer. “The parking lots are terrible and nothing gets fixed around here. I can’t even find a property manager around here to help out when i need help.”
He said they plan to move the business after its lease expires in July. Recent shootings and burglaries are scaring his staff.
“This doesn’t seem like a safe place for me and my guys,” he said. “A few of them have expressed concern about being here after dark because it’s so dark out here.”
Carmer explained he’ll consider staying if the new property manager promises security, parking lot lights, and cleanliness.
The Steffen Group wants them to hold on.
“Mr. Liddell passed away in 2013, which left the heirs of his estate responsible for the center,” Steffen said. “The heirs do not have that strong guiding hand of Stan Liddell from the past and i think this is a great reason that we’re taking the property to auction. It’s a great opportunity for new management to step into place to make needed improvements to the property to give it a fresh start.”
Potential buyers can contact the Steffen Group to learn more about the current auction. They’ll be holding information sessions on April 6 and April 12.