Downtown celebrating 10 years of growth with Parkview Field

The focus downtown really began 10 years ago when Parkview Field opened.

Posted: Apr 4, 2019 11:04 PM

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT) - Downtown development continues to thrive with millions of dollars of investments announced almost every year.

The focus downtown really began 10 years ago when Parkview Field opened.

"I can't believe it was 10 years," said Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry.

In 2009, the Wizards moved downtown and changed their name to the Tin Caps ... a nod to Johnny Appleseed, who is buried in Fort Wayne.

At the time, not every was in favor of a downtown baseball stadium.

Mayor Henry was on city council when construction began.

"I wasn't sure the city would buy into it at the time. And I wasn't sure that was the proper space for it," said Henry.

Jim Garigen remembers the controversy.

"There was so much controversy. But bringing the stadium here, downtown has just exploded and I attribute that to Parkview Field and the Fort Wayne Tin Caps," Garigen said.

Now the tune has changed and there is a lot of development happening.
City Scape Flats recently opened across the street and the Hampton Inn and Suites and Promenade Park are opening this summer.

"You look around from here, the scene from the ballpark and you see everything new that has come up and people just love to live down here now, not just come downtown for a ball game," said Garigen.

"Unquestionably Parkview's (Field) success added to a lot of the momentum for downtown," Henry said.

Moving the field downtown helped other parts of the city grow.

The Allen County War Memorial Coliseum tore down the old stadium to add much needed parking to host events like the NCAA Men's Basketball Division III Final Four.

Today, Parkview Field still looks like a new stadium.

It still wins best minor league stadium awards.

Henry said that's because the city gets a portion of ticket sales to help maintain the stadium.

"It should always be state of the art. Obviously we have the ability to do other things," said Henry.

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