The growth of mixed-use developments is a trend revitalizing the downtowns of large and small cities nationwide. Mixed-use developments consist of older office, manufacturing, and warehouse buildings converted to condominiums and apartments. This adaptive reuse of buildings is fueled by demand from growing demographic groups, primarily young singles, empty nesters, and double-income, no kids couples. Mixed-use developments can be a single building with retail on the street level and upper floors converted to apartments, or it may be a vacant warehouse or plant converted to luxury lofts.
In 2005 the City of Utica commissioned Zimmerman/Volk Associates to perform a study of living space in Utica's central business district. The study examined the viability of converting under-utilized commercial buildings into market-rate housing "mixed" with retail/office buildings. The study results show that Utica has a very strong potential for market rate housing in its downtown area. The Zimmerman/Volk study identified a potential demand of 108 new downtown living units per year.
How Can the City of Utica Help?
The City of Utica offers loans, grants, and real property tax breaks for mixed-use developers. These incentives include:
HUD Brownfield Economic Development Initiative (HUD BEDI)
Gant funds to CDBG entitlement communities for land write downs, remediation, collateralization of Section 108 loans, and financing to for-profit businesses (if funds are available in HUD's budget).
HUD Economic Development Initiative (HUD EDI)
Used in tandem with Section 108 loans, HUD EDI grants may be used for pre-development costs, as security for a Section 108 loan, or to reduce the interest rate of a Section 108 loan (if funds area available in HUD's budget).
City of Utica Façade Grant
Façade grants provide a dollar-for-dollar match up to $5,000 for façade improvements in the CDBG target area ($2:$1 match up to $10,000 in Utica's Scenic and Historic District).
485-a Real Property Tax Law
Allows 50% abatement of the value-added real-estate taxes for the commercial portion of mixed-use buildings, with a phase-in to full assessment over ten years. This applies to City, School, and County taxes.444-a Real Property Tax Law
Hstoric property that is altered or rehabilitated in accordance with local historic preservation laws is exempt from taxation to the extent of any increase in value attributable to the alteration or rehabilitation. An exemption of 100% in years 1-5 is applied then stepped up to full assessment by year 10.P.I.L.O.T.
Commercial tax abatement program available to non-housing portion of projects. This program is available through the Utica Industrial Development Agency, and may be combined with 485-a real property tax law benefits.Federal Investment Tax Credit
Owners of properties listed on the National Register of Historic Places may be eligible for a 20% federal income tax credit for substantial rehabilitation of historic properties. Work must meet the Secretary of the Interior's Standards for Rehabilitation and be approved by the National Park Service.
For Further Information
Dept.Urban & Economic Development
Utica City Hall
1 Kennedy Plaza
Utica, NY 13502
Mayor Robert Palmeri
1 Kennedy Plaza
Utica, NY 13502
(315) 734-9250 Fax
Allows 100% abatement of the value-added real estate taxes for the residential portion of mixed-use buildings, with a phase-in to full assessment over twelve years. This applies to City and School taxes.485-b Real Property Tax Law