Murphy Building’s neon canopy lighted again after ceremony in architect A.M. Strauss’ former digs

The canopy of the seventh-floor Murphy Building is seen before it was lighted Thursday evening. (Photo by Lisa M. Esquivel Long of News-Sentinel.com)
The Murphy Building's sixth and seventh floors, which has a neon-lighted canopy, are available for lease as office space. (Photo by Lisa M. Esquivel Long of News-Sentinel.com)
The A.M. Strauss Building was named for a developer in 1992. (Photo by Lisa M. Esquivel Long of News-Sentinel.com)
Photos of the Murphy Building through the years were displayed Thursday at a grand relighting ceremony. (Photo by Lisa M. Esquivel Long of News-Sentinel.com)
The view from the penthouse of the Murphy Building. (Photo by Lisa M. Esquivel Long of News-Sentinel.com)
The Embassy Theatre, upper left, is seen in the distance from the penthouse of the Murphy Building, where A.M. Strauss once had his architect offices. He designed the theater, originally called the Emboyd. (Photo by Lisa M. Esquivel Long of News-Sentinel.com)
The nearby Lincoln Tower was also designed by A.M. Strauss, whose offices once occupied what is now the Murphy Building. (Photo by Lisa M. Esquivel Long of News-Sentinel.com)
Guests at Thursday night's relighting ceremony take in the view from the penthouse of the Murphy Building. (Photo by Lisa M. Esquivel Long of News-Sentinel.com)
The neon lights on the canopy of the Murphy Building, 809 S. Calhoun St., glow again after a ceremony Thursday night. (Photo by Lisa M. Esquivel Long of News-Sentinel.com)

Green neon light outlines the canopy atop the Murphy Building in downtown Fort Wayne once again.

The top two floors of the building, 809 S. Calhoun St., once housed the offices of architect A.M. Strauss, who designed many prominent Fort Wayne structures, including the former St. Vincent Villa in the 2000 block of Wells Street, the Embassy Theatre, Indiana Hotel, the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum and the Lincoln Bank Tower.

Dedicated on May 1, 1950, the ultra-modern building was named for Strauss, according to information provided by the Steffen Group. Kay Jewelers and Value Dresses occupied the first floor with attorneys Mac Parker and Bob Hoover on the second floor, Joe Goldstine and Son Real Estate Brokers on the third floor and Hagerman Construction on the fourth.

On Thursday night before the lighting ceremony, the Steffen Group gave the public a peek inside the sixth- and seventh-floor office spaces, once occupied by A.M. Strauss Architects and now available for lease. Guests looked at the views of downtown from the building, which was renamed in summer 1992 in honor of Leonard Murphy, founder of the Fort Wayne development group Murphy & Associates.

Louis Weiner, a New York real estate investor, bought the building in fall 2015 and sought to relight the canopy after 10 years of darkness, according to the provided information. The rounded and circular canopy resembles a painter’s palette but more appropriately might take its shape from the French curve templates used in drafting.

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