By Lauren Caggiano
Downtown Fort Wayne is a hub of activity and development these days, and STAR Financial Bank is riding that wave with some exciting news. The Fort Wayne-based institution recently started construction on a new corporate headquarters, a two-tower, mixed-use building with a public parking garage in downtown Fort Wayne. The $43 million project will be located at 215 W. Main Street and will be named the STAR Bank Building, currently referred to as the Ashberry Project.
According to STAR Bank Executive Vice President/COO Kristin M. Marcuccilli, this move represents an exciting time for the company and for the community at large. But why now and why a second facility downtown? In simple terms, the timing is right and planned investment will give employees and customers access to all of the cool things happening downtown right now.
“A few years ago, we started to have conversations about what the future should look like with our downtown presence in Fort Wayne,” Marcuccilli said. “And we wanted to expand that, because we are very proud to be Fort Wayne’s hometown bank and be the only one that’s headquartered here. We believe in what the city is doing in terms of everyone getting hyper-focused on improving quality of life and improving growth here.”
You could say the physical growth is synonymous with a commitment to the area and the future. Specifically, the building’s North Tower will have seven stories and will be just under 50,000 square feet. The South Tower will be a 20,000 square foot, three-story building with parking decks extended over the top of the third story.
But there’s more to this project than just STAR upping its game. In addition to its presence there as the anchor, plans call for a future Ash event venue. The City of Fort Wayne will be an invested partner in the public parking garage. Private, connected, underground parking will be available to residential condo owners of the recently renovated 202 Metro Building. The project has an estimated completion of early 2023.
In the meantime, Marcuccilli said they’re fleshing out the plans for the building in terms of form and function.
“We’re going to have some really unique spaces — things we don’t have now— like an outdoor patio and a deck, so that you can have beautiful views of the city and surrounding areas,” she said. “We think the top floor will make for a great cafe space for our employees, but also a gathering place for when we want to host events with community partners. So, I think there will be something in it for everyone.”
Practically speaking, they’re going to be focused on providing quick, convenient and safe access for customers — when it matters the most.
“I think this is one of the first buildings that will be constructed in the middle of a pandemic, with all of those threats and safety protocols top of mind,” she said. “So, we can do some designing that will incorporate air filtration, certain lighting, touchless doors, touchless appliances — things that will offer our employees some more security and safety as well.”
*View a video regarding the project here: https://www.starfinancial.com/new-hq