FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) People visiting Fort Wayne’s West Main Street lately are bound to notice some changes. A new brewery, yoga studio and antique store go along with the neighborhood’s revitalization plan to attract small and local businesses.
According to Chris Shatto, President of the Nebraska Neighborhood Association, business was booming in the 50s until most of it washed away in the flood of 1982. The last ten years have brought real change. The long-term goal is making the corridor family-friendly while providing housing and amenities for University of Saint Francis students.
The latest announcement in the area was a new yoga studio going into the former Outlaws Motorcycle club.
“I love being back in town and be a part of Fort Wayne and downtown and that’s what I’m most excited about,” Luke Messmann, owner said.
Messmann is transforming the former Outlaws Motorcycle club into the soon-to-be Hot Yoga Fort Wayne. He plans on painting the exterior blue, add new windows, floors and lights.
“Having the lobby area with the bathrooms and changing rooms before the yoga studio,” Messmann said.
Across the street, the new Skeletunes Lounge and Pedal City recently opened.
Redwood Inn, down the street, is expanding. The new owner recently knocked down five buildings, making way for a patio. The space next to it will be another hangout area, set to be finished next month.
Junk Ditch Brewing Company, behind the new Marathon, is hiring. The Affine food truck owners’ vision began in 2013 and they hope to open this spring or summer.
“Id love to see West Main Street be kind o a shopping or an economic corridor where people are walking a lot more, spending more money in this particular area, shops, restaurants, breweries and things like that,” Andrew Smith, Co-owner said. “We felt Main Street was a really good location to start this business because it’s close to downtown, it’s in the downtown improvement district. So, it’s receiving grants and things like that and it’s still close enough to neighborhoods and areas of interest like Jefferson Pointe and that side of town.”
A portion of the street from Redwood Inn to the Farmers Market was rezoned last year to an urban corridor designation, allowing for mixed residential and retail use.
An antique store is also moving in. The president told NewsChannel 15 that several rumors are floating about what other businesses are going in. He can’t confirm or deny.