Art & Architecture: Artwork in Tax Credit Projects

For some developers, it is not enough to renovate and update a historic building. Rather, they have a vision that links art, architecture and heritage. For some, history and architecture form the basis of interior design, typically expressed by using historic photographs along the corridor walls. Such is the case of the Palmer House in Chicago and the Netherlands Hotel in […]

HTC on Main Street: Small-Scale Projects with a Big Impact

Typically, when we think of historic tax credit (HTC) projects, we picture large, architecturally significant buildings located in densely populated urban downtowns and commercial areas, such as the IBM Building in Chicago; vast industrial facilities repurposed for residential use, such as the Colt Factory in Hartford Conn.; or textile mills-turned-loft-apartments throughout the mid-Atlantic and New […]

Rooftop Additions on Historic Tax Credit Projects

 It is not uncommon in a historic tax credit (HTC) project to need an expansion of a building at the roof to accommodate specific programmatic uses or to accommodate new building systems. Construction of habitable rooftop additions or the installation of rooftop equipment, such as new cooling towers, may be possible in a HTC project, provided […]

Once-Dead Projects and Historic Tax Credits

The reality of the real estate market is that it is cyclical. Real estate development has arced over the past decade from too hot to frozen and now back to warming. And as experienced a few years ago, the cycle down can be rapid–in some cases stopping a development in the middle of construction. Now that the market is warming again, […]

Assembling an Effective Team for Window Replacement on Historic Tax Credit Projects

Windows are among the most challenging aspects of a historic tax credit (HTC) project. Replacement is not automatic–an owner must make a strong case for replacement by documenting that the existing windows are beyond repair. Identifying an appropriate replacement window and presenting that window for approval can be a time-consuming process that can lead to project delays. After a replacement window is approved, […]

The Value of Research in Historic Tax Credit Developments

When beginning a Historic Tax Credit (HTC) project, one of the most important steps is to understand the building’s status as a “Certified Historic Structure,” as defined in 36CFR67. In order for a project to be eligible for the HTC program, the building must be a certified historic structure. To be considered such, a building must be listed individually in the National […]

Historic Designations: What, When and Why

It seems simple enough: To use historic tax credits (HTCs), a building must be historic. Straightforward, right? Well, as is usually the case when that question is asked, the answer is no. There are multiple types of historic designations–individual listings, historic districts, federal designations, state designations and local designations. Further, there are timing issues and designation specifics which could affect an HTC […]

Successful Incorporation of New Interior Openings in Historic Tax Credit Projects

Certain building types inherently contain expansive interior spaces. Department stores, warehouses and factories, for example, can have footprints that extend a full city block. A central challenge in rehabilitating buildings with large footprints is the absence of daylight into the inner core. The adaptive reuse of such buildings, particularly for hotel or apartment use, often […]

Energy-Efficiency Upgrades and Historic Buildings

This month’s Toolbox features insight about incorporating energy efficiency on historic buildings based on expertise from Heritage staff member and window expert Sam Wharton. Wharton is a recent graduate from the Frank Lloyd Wright School of Architecture. Over the past three decades, he has promoted strategies that increase the thermal performance of windows, and has extensive knowledge of green building technology and methodology.

Challenges and Opportunities when Redeveloping School Buildings

School buildings elicit strong associations for the public. Not only are they structures that housed you or your children for many years of learning, they serve as community anchors and create a strong sense of place within a community. However, many historic schools have been shuttered, making them targets for redevelopment. One of the most common building types rehabilitated using the historic […]

Making Joe Frazier’s Gym a historical site won’t be easy

“Key to any feasible plan for Joe Frazier’s Gym is encouraging a sale between the current owner and an appropriate buyer,” said the report. “The Panel agreed that the ideal buyer would be a philanthropic individual or organization, or a corporate owner who would not only purchase the building but would also invest in necessary renovations.”

Subdividing Significant Interior Spaces

Certain building types inherently contain significant interior spaces, the character of which can be defined by their volume as well as their architectural distinction. School buildings contain cafeterias, gymnasiums and auditoriums; armories contain drill halls; hotels contain ballrooms; fraternal lodges contain ceremonial spaces; office buildings contain lobbies; and bank buildings contain monumental banking halls. The adaptive reuse of such spaces often hinges […]