Fort Industry Square Through the Years
Fort Industry Square is a collection of historic buildings located on Summit Street between Monroe Street and Jefferson Avenue. Combined, they are 144,000 square feet which have been used for offices, retail space, restaurants and apartments while overlooking the Maumee River.
In the early 1980’s, for a cost of $14 million, the majority of the buildings were renovated and connected via a hallway that fronts on Summit Street. This gives the collection a coordinated look, and allows individuals to move between buildings more easily. There are 16 parcels that were built in the following years (in order starting from Jefferson corner): 1895, 1887, 1862, 1895, 1862, 1887, 1867, 1878, 1897, 1897, 1887, 1887, 1887, 1890, 1987, 1987. The last two parcels were completed in conjunction with the opening of the SeaGate Convention Centre in 1987.
The space is brimming with history as it incorporates long demolished Toledo landmarks into the design. In the 1980’s the developer used salvaged architectural fragments from long-gone buildings, such as the Willys-Overland (Jeep) headquarters, to make this space unique and eclectic.
There were many different businesses that occupied Fort Industry Square throughout the years such as a Scottish restaurant called The Bagpiper, a jazz club called Murphy’s Place and Mootz Candy Shop, but it was primarily used as office space. While occupancy is currently low, several businesses still inhabit the space, including, law offices, a photography studio, a marketing agency, engineering consulting and logistic services.
Traveling further back in history, Fort Industry Square ties Toledo to the Revolutionary War. The fort depiction shown on the City of Toledo’s seal shows a stockade fort built around 1800. It was used on July 4, 1805 for the signing of the Treaty of Fort Industry which opened the Firelands area to settlement.
Per the Ohio Historical Marker on the outside of the building: “On this site, July 4, 1805, a treaty was concluded with the chiefs of the Ottawa, Chippewa, Pottawatomie, Shawnee, Muncie, and Delaware tribes. The Indians ceded their title to over 2.7 million acres in the Firelands, now Erie and Huron counties, and the Connecticut Western Reserve.”
ProMedica Health System purchased 13 of the parcels recently. While their plans have not been announced, we look forward to the buildings continuing to have purpose while reflecting our past.