Second Downtown Hartford Housing Project Set To Begin

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Developers converting a former office building near Hartford’s Union Station into apartments completed the purchase of the building today and now have all financing in place.

The $14.9 million conversion of 179 Allyn St. — also known as The Professional Building — into 63, one-bedroom units is expected to get underway in early December, the developer, Dakota Partners, told me this afternoon.

179 Allyn Street, Hartford

Conversion of the former Professional Building into housing is expected to begin in December. Photo by Kenneth R. Gosselin/kgosselin@courant.com

“We looking at 10 months, and we hope to beat that,” Roberto Arista, a Dakota principal, said.

Update on Nov. 20, 2013: Correction to this blog post: The auction was not related to a foreclosure.

Dakota purchased the 1880s, six-story building for $1.5 million in a foreclosure auction, Arista said.

The apartments will average about 750 square feet and rents will range between $925 and $1,025 a month, not including parking. The units will be 80 percent market rate and 20 percent “affordable,” or with rents based on area income.

The Nv Nightclub and the Black Bear Saloon are expected to remain tenants on the ground floor.

The financing package includes $6.5 million from the Connecticut Region Development Authority’s $60 million fund for promoting housing in downtown Hartford. The CRDA’s funds are split between a $3.25 million equity investment and a $3.25 loan.

The financing also includes a $3.1 million loan from Bank of America and $5 million in state and federal historic rehabilitation tax credits. The balance is developer equity.

As a condition of the tax credits, the building’s exterior — rendered in brick and terra cotta — must be preserved. In addition, Dakota said, it will replace the current windows with ones that are appropriate for the era when the building was constructed. The building still retains its original marble lobby.

The building, which still retains its original marble lobby, was designed by the same architects as Hartford’s Goodwin Hotel.

The conversion of The Professional Building is the second of a half-dozen housing projects downtown to secure its financing. The first, the conversion of the former Masonic Temple on Ann Street, completed its financing earlier this month.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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