The Development Fund of the Western Reserve (DFWR) recently helped finance the renovation and reuse of the historic United Building Hotel on the corner of South Main and East Market Streets in downtown Akron, Ohio.
Redeveloper Tony Troppe is adaptively reusing the 58,000 square foot historic structure into a 71-room boutique hotel in Akron’s rapidly-revitalizing Main/Market Streets Historic Arts District.
The loan was made through the Akron Community Revitalization Fund (ACRF), a community endeavor which was capitalized by over thirty philanthropic foundations, individual and corporate grants, new markets tax credit equity and private loans and investments.
DFWR, a private non-profit affiliated with the Development Financing Authority of Summit County, assisted in financing the project by providing a $1.28 million loan. Total project costs are approximately $10 million.
The ACRF was established to assist with financing important community and economic development projects within many of Akron’s most economically distressed neighborhoods providing more flexible rates and terms than is available through conventional financing. Other financing was provided through historic tax credit equity, Cortland Bank, and Village Capital Corporation, (VCC) a Community Development Financing Institution (CDFI) based in Cleveland.
This project is the first loan VCC has made in Akron. VCC also assisted DFWR with underwriting the project.
The hotel will be developed and managed by the Riley Hospitality group of Medina, which has hotel properties in several states. The project will create approximately 83 construction jobs and 20 permanent and 9 part-time jobs in Akron’s downtown. Pride One Construction of Medina is the General Contractor for this project.
Chris Burnham, DFWR Executive Director said, on behalf of the DFWR Board of Directors, “We express our gratitude to all the funders of the ACRF, and we acknowledge our partner-lenders VCC and Cortland Bank. Most of all we thank the development team for having the vision and faith to bring this important investment into Akron’s downtown.”
But this wasn’t the only good news ACRF has had for Akron lately. On June 1, 2018, the Akron Community Revitalization Fund announced its third loan.
The $700,000 loan will be used by Rubber City McDonald’s to finance the purchase and improvements of a building located at 55 Furnace Street. This loan enabled Rubber City McDonald’s to consolidate its Headquarters operations and add training space into one central downtown location that will bring 25 employees and many people from 250 Northeast Ohio restaurants into Akron for programs such as food safety courses and management training.
John Blickle, President of Rubber City McDonald’s said, “We’ve had a desire for quite some time to have our office operations and training centralized in a downtown location. The flexible terms provided through the ACRF enabled us to expedite the move and do more than we would have been able to through a more conventional loan.”
The loan was made through the Akron Community Revitalization Fund (ACRF), a $6.75M community endeavor which was capitalized by over thirty philanthropic foundations, individual and corporate grants, new markets tax credit equity and private loans and investments. The ACRF was established to assist with financing important community and economic development projects within Akron’s most economically distressed neighborhoods, providing more flexible rates and terms than is available through conventional financing. Village Capital Corporation of Cleveland assisted DFWR in underwriting the project.
Chris Burnham added, “We’re very pleased to announce our third ACRF loan. The ACRF is impacting the on-going revitalization of Akron’s downtown area, as envisioned by its many community funders. We’re currently working through credit review of a fourth project, which we should be able to announce soon.”
Now wasting any time, on June 14, 2018, ACRF its fourth loan, this time for $580,000. It will be used to build-out tenant improvements in the former Advanced Elastomer Systems (AES) Building. The loan is part of a larger financing package arranged with First National Bank (FNB) and People’s Bank. Village Capital Corporation of Cleveland assisted DFWR in underwriting the project.
Between 1996 and 2016, the property had 90% occupancy rates, until Exxon Mobil Advanced Elastomer Systems (AES) vacated it, resulting in the loss of 200 jobs and contributing to downtown Akron having an office vacancy in excess of 20%. The new tenants, OHM Advisors and CommuniCare Health Services, are expected to bring approximately 70 quality full-time jobs from outside Summit County into downtown Akron. These employees will help to support existing downtown businesses.
David Schipper of The Schipper Group said, “We appreciate DFWR for its willingness to collaborate with our lender FNB and People’s Bank in order to make this loan which helped us bring these new companies into downtown Akron. Schipper Group has been committed to downtown for more than 25 years, and we’re proud to have a part in its ongoing revitalization.”
Images courtesy of Tony Troppe.