Groundbreaking set for new shell building near FWA

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – Fort Wayne’s Airport District has been a hotbed for business growth in recent years—and another attractive property is on the way. HardHell Investments will soon begin construction on a new shell building just north of Fort Wayne International Airport. A groundbreaking ceremony for the $5.4 million facility is scheduled for 9 a.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 16 at 4455 Airway Ave. in Fort Wayne.

Shell buildings, typically constructed without a specific tenant in mind, are designed to help businesses scale up quickly. Instead of going through the time-consuming process of acquiring land and building from scratch, the prospective tenant can lease an already-standing shell building, customize it, and quickly get up and running.

“Growing companies can expand anywhere in the country—they have no shortage of options,” said Ellen Cutter, chief economic development officer at GFW Inc. “When we can offer the speed to market that comes with a shell building, plus a growing community, it helps set Allen County apart from the competition in our recruiting efforts.”

The 52,000-square-foot facility will be expandable up to 117,000 square feet. The site is zoned for general industrial use (I2).

“We saw a need for buildings sized between 40,000-70,000 square feet that was not being met,” HardHell Investments co-owner Jeff Harding said. “We hope this will be the first of many buildings that we will construct to help change the landscape and skyline of Fort Wayne for the better.”

The name “HardHell Investments” is a combination of the company’s owners’ last names: Jeff Harding and Ryan Hellinger. Hellinger is also president of CME Corporation, which will serve as the builder on the project and will co-host the groundbreaking event.

“CME Corporation is honored to be a part of this project with HardHell Investments,” Hellinger said. ”CME has been committed to Fort Wayne and northeast Indiana’s growth for the last 50 years and we are excited to partner with a firm that feels the same passion for our city’s future”.

The celebration is open to the public. Following the groundbreaking ceremony, guests are invited to enjoy Nothing Bundt Cakes and beverages.

About CME Corporation

CME Corporation has been in business for over 50 years, and has built a reputation for honesty and integrity. From our start in 1972 until today, CME continues to complete projects of all sizes and levels of complexity, but one thing CME has never changed is our sense of commitment and respect for our team, our work and our customers. Learn more at

About Greater Fort Wayne Inc.

Greater Fort Wayne (GFW) Inc. serves Fort Wayne and Allen County, Indiana, as its primary point of contact for economic growth. GFW Inc. focuses on prosperity and community vibrancy through economic development, advocacy, programs, and resources that support business success, leadership development, graduate retention, and community engagement.