Historic District Building to be Renovated
The Claremont City Council unanimously passed a resolution last Wednesday night following a public hearing approving an application for the RSA 79-E Community Revitalization Tax Relief Incentive for the “substantial rehabilitation” of 40 Union St. The property has been purchased by Deglace, LLC, a Kentucky-based chocolatier that plans to open a test kitchen in the former Esersky Hardware building. Deglace plans to invest about $159,700 to rehabilitate the property into a business use, featuring commercial space and storage. The tax relief incentive would be for a period of five years, beginning upon the completion of the property rehab and the issuance of a Certificate of Occupancy.
In July of 2015, the City adopted the provisions of 79-E; it has been used once so far, by the Ink Factory which rehabbed a mill building on Water St. and relocated there from Pleasant St. The Union St. property is also located in the historic district and was built in 1833 as a commercial building. The property is currently assessed at $90,300. It is currently vacant and has been for approximately three years.
In order to approve an application for 79-E, the City must determine that a development project will create one or more “public benefits”, such as enhancing the economic vitality of the downtown, enhances and improves a structure that is culturally or historically important on a local, regional, state or national level and promotes the preservation and reuse of existing building stock throughout a municipality by the rehabilitation of historic structures. The council also considered the following when it evaluated the application: That the property has been vacant for three years and is located in the Lower Village Historic District, the $159,700 renovation budget is in excess of $75,000 or 25% of pre-renovation assessed value, which is the Claremont threshold and the proposal is consistent with the 2011 and draft 2017 Master Plans and the findings of the 2013 City Center Initiative Report.
The building will be restored to a more historical appearance through repairs and replacements to windows, masonry,