Architectural drawing of Broadway Lofts

Broadway Lofts needs tax abatement to start construction

Contributed By:The 411 News

Project will invoke Gary's new Community Benefits Agreement ordinance

Broadway Lofts, the housing development planned for the 700 blocks of Broadway and Massachusetts, including the site of Gary's old Memorial Auditorium, is moving forward again.

Pete Schwiegeraht, vice president of MVAH Partners appeared in a video conference Tuesday before the Gary Common Council's planning committee seeking a 10-year tax abatement for the mixed use residential and commercial project.

The residential space is intended to attract young professionals and seniors who want to live in the downtown area, Schwiegeraht said. It will have 27 one-bedroom units and 11 two-bedroom units. The building will include 4,000 sq ft of commercial space on the ground floor.

Solar panels on the roof and over the carport area will produce as much energy as the building uses.

The commercial tenants have already been selected. Northwest Indiana Community Action will operate a Women, Infants and Children (WIC) clinic. Indiana State and Ivy Tech are partnering in a workforce training center offering continuing education courses.

Broadway Lofts will include a community garden operated by FAITH Farms CDC to provide residents with fresh produce. Car and bike share services are planned.

The tax abatement is the last piece of funding needed to complete the $11 million costs of Broadway Lofts.

"Tax abatement was contemplated as part of the original request to the city in 2018," said A.J. Bytnar, Director of the Gary Redevelopment Commission. "However, the percentage of abatement requested could not be determined until project costs were finalized. The developer has that information now, which is why the request is in front of the council currently, rather than in 2018."

The project qualifies for tax abatements as improvement or redevelopment of lands in an economic recovery area. Instead of paying $911,000 in taxes over the 10 years, the tax bill for MVAH will be about $242,000; a $669,000 savings.

MVAH will be assessed a 15% fee on those savings which will be distributed to the city's redevelopment commission or a non-profit economic development corporation designated by the city council. Likely nonprofits to receive those funds are the Gary Economic Development Corporation and a second non-profit corporation -- Re-Imagine Economic Development Corporation -- being set up by the Prince administration.

Broadway Lofts tax abatement will also invoke the city's new Community Benefits Agreement ordinance, approved in December 2019.

It applies to any property, land, tax abatement, tax incentive, grant, guaranteed loan, financial incentive, or any in-kind assistance given to a developer in consideration for bringing a development to the City of Gary. The ordinance states an agreement shall be established between the city, the developer and the Coalition for a Gary Community Benefits Agreement (CGCBA) to ensure benefits to the community in return.

The full city council will hear the proposed tax abatement resolution at its next meeting, June 16.

Story Posted:06/11/2020

» Press Release Homepage

Add Comment

Name (Required)  
Comment (Required)  

View Comments