Community Issues

Money Will Preserve Cool Historic Buildings Across PA

Projects will create affordable housing, a cool tavern -- and boost business districts.

When you have a historic building that's falling down or damaged, you really have two choices. You can tear it down, leaving a little "tear" in the historic fabric of a community. Or you can invest money to restore it, preserving a piece of history for future generations and turning the building into something good for the community.

That's what's happening in 24 Pennsylvania communities where projects will get $3 million in state tax credits, leveraging $113 million in outside money for restoration projects.

Arsenal Motors design mock-up, courtesy Loopedin.

"Maintaining our stock of historic buildings is vital not just for preserving Pennsylvania's history, but for promoting investment in our communities and boosting the local economy," said Department of Community and Economic Development Secretary Dennis Davin said. "These tax credits help communities get new uses out of historic properties to ensure they're making the area a better place to live, work, and play."

The projects set for Southwestern Pennsylvania include: Ohringer Building , Braddock, Allegheny County Rehabilitation of the iconic but now-vacant furniture store building in downtown Braddock into 37 affordable apartments for artists. Check out the past (above) and present (below) photos to see why this one might be my favorite of the bunch. $200,000 tax credit allocation, $11M in estimated construction expenditures.

The Ohringer Building is mostly vacant and definitely run down.

Homestead Masonic Hall , Homestead, Allegheny County - Rehabilitation of the historic Masonic building in the Homestead Historic District into market-rate apartments. $150,000 tax credit allocation, $43M in estimated construction expenditures.

Arsenal Motors , Pittsburgh, Allegheny County - Rehabilitation of an historic automobile building in the Lawrenceville Historic District into offices. $200,000 tax credit allocation, $4.9M in estimated construction expenditures.

You'll be able to raise a tankard of ale in the 1792 John Woods House.

John Woods House , Pittsburgh (Hazelwood), Allegheny County - Rehabilitation of one of the oldest buildings in Pittsburgh (1792) into a pub and restaurant. This building is right out of the Revolutionary War -- who even knew this was in Hazelwood!? $25,000 tax credit allocation, $750,000 in estimated construction expenditures.

Century Inn , Scenery Hill, Washington County - Restoration of the landmark tavern (1794) located along the historic National Road. Love this building and it's history. It's already been repaired and reopened from a devastating 2015 fire. $100,000 tax credit allocation; $1.7M in estimated construction expenditures.

Gutted in a 2015 fire, Century Inn (1794) has been restored.

"Maintaining our stock of historic buildings is vital." Secretary Dennis Davin
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