First contracts signed under renewed historic tax credit fund

PROVIDENCE – The R.I. Division of Taxation on Monday identified the first three projects to sign contracts under the state’s revived historic preservation tax credit program.

Veterans for Tomorrow LLC of Pawtucket plans to convert the two-story Heaton & Cowing Mill at 1115 Douglas Ave. in Providence into 19 affordable housing units for veterans, and will receive $676,000 in historic tax credits, or 20 percent of the total qualified rehabilitation expenditures of $3.4 million.

BVG II Limited Partnership will receive $652,852, or 25 percent of the $2.9 million in qualified rehabilitation expenditures, to rehabilitate the commercial store fronts on the ground floor of the Gately Building at 335 Main St. in Pawtucket. The project will restore the exterior of the building to its original appearance based on historical photographs from its construction in 1914. The interior will be reconfigured to support residential units, while retaining the building’s original staircases. The building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

TWA LLC will receive $250,000, or 25 percent of the $1 million in qualified rehabilitation expenditures, to renovate the Merchants Bank Building at 20 Westminster St. in the Downtown Providence Historic District. The building, constructed between 1855 and 1857, is a six-story brownstone first built as a commercial office building. The project proposed by TWA would repair the brownstown cladding on the building’s exterior and add new walls inside to create offices, bedrooms and baths.

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In connection with the renewal of the historic tax credit program, the Divison of Taxation and the R.I. Historical Preservation and Heritage Commission have proposed regulations that would succeed the emergency regulation currently in place and establish project requirements, application guidelines and other guidance for developers and tax advisers.

The Division of Taxation will hold a public hearing on the proposed regulation at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 22, at One Capitol Hill in Providence.

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