Two Downtown Buildings Receive Approvals for Tax Credits

Artist’s rendering of renovated building.

Representative Brian S. Dempsey.

Rep. Brian S. Dempsey.

A total of $550,000 in Massachusetts Historic tax credits are being granted for two building renovation projects in Haverhill’s former shoe district.

A rehabilitation project for the Marsh Block, 37 Washington St., has been awarded $50,000 in tax credits, and a former “shoe and leather” building at 122 Essex St. will receive $500,000 in Historic tax credits, according to Rep. Brian S. Dempsey (D-Haverhill), House Ways and Means Committee chairman. The Massachusetts Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit program is administered by the Massachusetts Historical Commission, under Secretary of the Commonwealth William F. Galvin, chairman.

“I appreciate that Secretary Galvin recognizes and supports the preservation and restoration of Haverhill’s historical buildings,” Dempsey said. “These projects will bring much needed housing to Haverhill and contribute to the continued revitalization of our historic downtown.”

The Marsh Block, a four-story building, most recently housed Surplus Office Supply. The expected $5.8 million project will be known as J.M. Lofts and provide 18 market-rate loft-style housing units. “The project involves the complete rehabilitation of the 20,000+ square foot building into ground floor retail and live/work space, and 18 one and two-bedroom lofts. The lofts will feature 10+ foot tall ceilings, exposed brick, large efficient windows with generous natural light, high efficiency mechanical systems, a full service elevator to each floor and well-appointed kitchens and baths,” according to the developer.

Haverhill city councilors previously approved a Tax Increment Exemption (TIE) agreement, exempting the development from 50 percent of property taxes due in the project’s first fiscal year. The exemption will decrease by 10 percent during the subsequent four fiscal years. The base value of the property is listed at $348,000.

The credits “support the continued restoration of two historic downtown shoe district buildings,” he said a statement Friday. The announcement was made along with Reps. Linda Dean Campbell (D-Methuen) and Diana DiZoglio (D-Methuen), as well as Senator Kathleen A. O’Connor Ives (D-Newburyport) and Haverhill Mayor James J. Fiorentini.

“This tax credit is critical to continue the momentum of the renaissance and re-birth of our downtown in Haverhill,” Fiorentini said. “Without the tax credits, these projects would not happen.”

The $50 million pilot program is available for certified rehabilitation projects of buildings that are listed in, or eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places.

“Under the program, a certified rehabilitation project on an income-producing property is eligible to receive up to 20 percent of the cost of certified rehabilitation expenditures in state income tax credits,” a spokesperson said.

The tax credit program expires Dec. 31, 2017.

3 thoughts on “Two Downtown Buildings Receive Approvals for Tax Credits

  1. Fiorentini said. “Without the tax credits, these projects would not happen.” –

    So much for paying a “fair share” right Jimmy? It’s not like residents that end up living there at “market share” pricing will need, use, or pay for public services right?

  2. This is crazy!!! We the tax payers will be responsible to pay to build a new school just for all the new apartments and houses that are popping up in every corner of Haverhill. The current schools are at capacity! What is the city thinking???? Where are they going to fit all these extra kids? Who is paying for a new school???? The enrollment has increased by over 200 this year alone. Seriously someone need to look at the numbers and realize this growth is happening too fast and the schools are not prepared!