Slocum neighbors stop picketing, meet with Parkview administrators
About 30 neighbors opposed to the Slocum Pointe multifamily housing development in Fort Wayne this morning laid down their signs when offered a meeting with Parkview Health administrators, according to the state representative who brokered the meeting.
The neighbors picketed at an entrance to Parkview Regional Medical Center on East Dupont Road for about 15 minutes, said State Rep. Bob Morris, R-Fort Wayne. They were then greeted by administrators and accepted an offer to come inside to talk, he said.
Morris attended a neighborhood meeting Monday night and suggested a meeting in lieu of picketing, but some neighbors said they wanted to picket to continue to raise awareness of their concerns.
Slocum Pointe would convert the former Frances Slocum Elementary School into apartments and construct a new apartment building on the property in the 2500 block of Curdes Avenue.
The result would be 43 units of low-income housing. Those proposing the project, which has received all necessary government approvals, are Brightpoint, an antipoverty nonprofit organization, and Keller Development, both of Fort Wayne.
Parkview is the owner of record for the property, which was called the Lougheed Center and used for offices. Plans are to sell the property to the developers, but the contract has not been completed.
Neighbors planned to picket this afternoon and Wednesday morning at Parkview’s Dupont Road and East State Boulevard locations, but those demonstrations were called off, Morris said -- although he added a few “stragglers” might show up.
“People were very happy at the way the meeting went,” Morris said, adding it was attended by Ben Miles, president of Parkview Regional Medical Center & Affiliates and John Bowen, chief operating officer of Parkview Hospital Randallia.
No decisions were made on the sale or other matters, Parkview spokeswoman Jessica Forr said. Both administrators plan to meet with neighbors at a neighborhood association meeting at 7 p.m. Wednesday in Lions Park, she said.