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Mayor Horrigan Introduces Legislation for Renovation of the Historic Landmark Building into Mixed Use Development


Bowery Development Group to invest an estimated $33 million

City of Akron Press Release
From the desk of Ellen Lander Nischt, Press Secretary
Published: 11-28-2016

Akron, Ohio, November 28, 2016 — Mayor Horrigan introduced legislation to the Planning Committee of Akron City Council today to authorize the sale of several buildings along Main Street, including the historic Landmark Building (the former Akron Savings & Loan), to Bowery Development Group, LLC (“Bowery Development Group”) for redevelopment into mixed-use residential, office, and retail space.   

       The proposed legislation, which comes less than two weeks after Mayor Horrigan and the Downtown Akron Partnership released the findings from Phase I of the Downtown Vision and Redevelopment Plan, provides for the sale of the Landmark Building (156 South Main Street) for a percentage of the Tax Increment Financing, estimated at $1.3 million. Bowery Development Group will renovate the nearly 70,000 square feet of available space in the Landmark Building into restaurant/retail space on the main floor and approximately 86 one- and two-bedroom loft apartments on the upper 11 floors, all pursuant to Historic Tax Credit Guidelines. 

       The agreement also provides for the sale of 5 vacant buildings abutting Lock 4 (164-176 and 186 South Main) for $10.  Bowery Development Group will restore these buildings, under the Historic Tax Credit Guidelines, for mixed use, including historic loft residential, historic loft boutique office, retail, restaurant, bar and/or entertainment.

        “This is exactly the type of catalytic development that Phase I of the Downtown Vision and Redevelopment Plan encouraged,” Mayor Horrigan said of the project.  “Two of the primary recommendations of Phase I were to concentrate our resources, incentives, and attention on Main Street and to start with residential development.  This project will achieve both goals and more. It will provide residential options to attract and retain educated talent and draw businesses Downtown, activate ground floor storefronts for pedestrians on Main Street, build on Akron’s unique history by restoring a stunning historic building, and spur complementary development—including retail, grocery, and entertainment—that will expand on the existing activity around Lock 3.”

       The historic 12-story Landmark Building—located at the corner of Main Street and Bowery Street in the Akron Civic Theatre block—was constructed in 1923 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The building has been vacant for several years. Previous attempts to develop the property were unsuccessful. The new developer, Bowery Development Group, is a “street-smart, market-focused” partnership between DeHoff Development Company (“DeHoff”) and KBFG Investments, LLC (“Geis”).  DeHoff is a North Canton company that owns and manages more than 1 million square feet of commercial and retail space and has developed some of the most popular places to shop, eat, work and live in Northeast Ohio.  Geis has developed, built and managed over 58 million square feet of space, and is the firm responsible for the successful renovation of The 9 in downtown Cleveland into a wildly popular mixed use residential development. 

          “My plan and vision is to take dormant City-owned properties and, step-by-step, turn them into performing community assets.  This vacant stretch of Main Street is at the top of my list,” Mayor Horrigan said of negotiating the deal. “This project will be a foundation for future development and an incredible asset to a vibrant Downtown neighborhood, but history has shown that it will not be simple or effortless.  Through this agreement, I am confident that we have negotiated the right balance of strong private financing, proven development experience, and smart public incentives necessary for this redevelopment to be a success. As public servants, we must always be thoughtful and shrewd stewards of public assets, while fulfilling our responsibility to make things happen.  Today I am proud to bring forward a proposal for $33 million in catalytic private sector investment that will energize our Downtown and generate jobs and tax revenue that will help strengthen and support our neighborhoods.”

       The ordinance authorizing the agreement is pending before the Planning Committee of City Council.  “I’m glad to see this proposal come forward,” Council President Marilyn Keith said.  “I believe this represents a new chapter and a fresh start at a vibrant second life for this important and historic block of Main Street.” 

       The project will be funded, in part, through Tax Increment Financing payments and is contingent on Bowery Development Group receiving Historic Tax Credits through the State of Ohio. Construction must begin within six months of closing on the sale of the properties, and is estimated to take approximately 18 months to complete.


For further information, contact:
Ellen Lander Nischt
Press Secretary / Assistant Director of Law
166 South High Street, Suite 200
Akron, Ohio 44308
Phone: (330) 375-2325
E-mail: [email protected]

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