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The Journal Gazette

Retirement community proposed

$12 million project to include housing, hotel, restaurant

– A developer of senior citizen communities is continuing to diversify his holdings with a $12 million mixed-used complex on Fort Wayne’s northeast side.

The Fort Wayne Plan Commission on Wednesday approved Yellow Retirement of Wheelock/Maysville Corners, a proposed 137-unit rental residence featuring a neighboring hotel and restaurant on Wheelock Road, west of Maysville Road. The project will require rezoning approval from City Council. It is zoned low-density residential.

The rentals are yellow duplex-style dwellings that owner J.R. Parent’s properties are known for. They consist of two bedrooms, one full bath, a single-car garage and patio area. Monthly rent range is $750 to $800.

A two-story hotel and the 8,000-square-foot restaurant would be to the east of the senior apartments, with connecting walking paths to allow residents access. Holiday Inn Express and Richards Restaurant are the likely businesses, Parent said, adding that a doctor’s office or small grocery also could occupy space.

“We probably are 18 months away from breaking ground,” he said.

Last May, Parent invested $6 million to acquire a Kosciusko County lakeside resort. The renovated Oakwood Resort is a 72-room vacation spot resting on 27 acres off Lake Wawasee in Syracuse. Parent envisioned the picturesque lodge being ideal for weddings, receptions and conference events.

“This is a whole new industry for us, and we’re still learning,” he said. “We want to make sure we have a good grasp of what we’re doing.”

Because Yellow Retirement caters to older tenants, Parent said he tries to build the rentals in locations where groceries, pharmacies and similar services are nearby.

“There was nothing out on Wheelock,” he said.

Parent said Yellow Retirement of Wheelock/Maysville Corners eventually will create about 50 jobs.

The Plan Commission on Wednesday also approved the primary plan for a more traditional Parent project – a 45-unit Yellow Retirement Communities facility on Aboite Center Road near Coventry Lane. The proposed $2.5 million complex would be bordered by the Heather Ridge addition to the west.

It also will need rezoning approval because it’s in a low-density residential area.

Yellow Retirement Communities has more than 500 units over 20 sites, primarily in northeast Indiana.

Brewery expansion

Mad Anthony Brewery Co., 1109 Taylor St., received the OK to add an extra 1,500 square feet for storage at the facility.

The project is expected to cost less than $300,000. The company employs about 65 workers at the brewery. City Council must approve a rezoning as well.

It is currently zoned for limited industrial use.