“Breathing new life into an old friend.”
It encompassed several blocks east and west of Broadway and north of Taylor Street and employed hundreds of people. By 2014, the company had fewer than 100 employees in For Wayne, and fewer than 30 worked at the downtown campus. Some buildings have now been vacant for 30 years and there are now only a handful of employees remaining as caretakers until the complex can be sold.
The Taylor Street Plant, was the last of the major expansion of GE’s plant facilities in Fort Wayne. The plant was constructed in 1941, completed in 1942 and has been lying empty since 2015.The plant was initially designated for the production of aircraft engine superchargers and over the years the plant made aircraft motors for the military, as well as enameled copper and aluminum wires and aircraft motor control components.
The plant had its own coal-fired power plant, which has since had its boiler and stack dismantled and removed. The site has also been decontaminated where the boiler stood, to mitigate any environmental concerns.
There may potentially be some contamination problems to be found at the site, which will need to be examined before any work can be done. PCBs were present in some parts of the building’s electrical system, which is typical for older buildings. PCBs, or polychlorinated biphenyls, are a known carcinogen. As a precaution, GE removed these parts of the electrical system and cleaned the surrounding areas. There are no pending regulatory issues regarding PCBs at the facility.
As this proposal indicates, 4 SKIES believes the Taylor Street Plant site is ideally suited for repurposing as a major produce production facility utilizing advanced vertical farming technologies and techniques.