Commonwealth Preservation Group

Tax Credits

Community Bank, Petersburg, VA

Community Bank, Petersburg, VA Before

Prior to a 2011 renovation, Petersburg’s Community Bank had suffered from deferred maintenance with few tenants in the recent past. The owner proposed rehabilitation for mixed use, installing office space on the building’s first floor and residential apartments on the upper levels.

Community Bank, Petersburg, VA After

Constructed c.1911-1914, Community Bank is one of a few turn-of-the-century high-rise buildings in downtown Petersburg. The building is a seven-story American bond brick structure. Using old photographs, workers were able to identify and reveal historic limestone arches from under the cracked stucco covering part of the building’s exterior. The structure’s missing cornice and outer double leaf doors were also replaced. In the interior, an effort was made to preserve the building’s unique historical features. Renovations revealed closed transoms and opened up historic decorative ceilings, formerly encased in dropped acoustical tile.

Sacred Heart, Norfolk, VA

 

Sacred Heart, Norfolk, VA

Sacred Heart, Norfolk, VA

Sacred Heart Catholic Church has been a landmark of urban Ghent since its construction in 1923, completing its most recent renovation in 2011. A minor expansion remained in keeping with the Italian Renaissance style of the church, and plumbing and electrical wires were updated as needed. Some aging or damaged historical features, such as windows, brick, and roof tiles, also required restoration, and the church’s kitchen was reconfigured within its own footprint to adhere to the historic floor plan. At the conclusion of a project spanning eight years, Sacred Heart Catholic Church remains one of North Ghent’s historic community treasures.

St. Luke’s Church, Smithfield, VA

St. Luke’s Church, Smithfield, VA Before

St. Luke’s Church in Smithfield, Virginia, is the oldest remaining church of English foundation in the United States. Originally constructed in 1632, the brick building, with a single nave Gothic sanctuary and a monumental tower, has been modified over time. Later additions include the insertion of Jacobian inspired interior finishes and late nineteenth century stained glass windows.

St. Luke’s Church, Smithfield, VA After

The structure underwent renovations c.1890 and from 1953-1957, but despite ongoing maintenance and a dedicated foundation, by the early 2000s the building was again in disrepair. CPG aided Historic St. Luke’s Restoration, Inc. in attaining tax credits for this most recent restoration.

In the sanctuary, deteriorating windowsills were mended and new breathable, protective panels placed on the stained glass windows. A new application of plaster matched that of the original building; plaster from the 1950s renovation had used a faux antique finish inconsistent with historically accurate limewash. Outside, an archaeologist hand-dug a new trench for pipes, guiding water away from the historic building. The restoration was planned and completed over a period of seven years (2004-2011), and the final result preserves the building’s developmental history.

Blackstone Lofts, Blackstone, VA

Blackstone Lofts, Blackstone, VA

One of the most striking elements of the former Plantation Tobacco Company Warehouse is its stepped parapet, concealing a front gable roof with metal clad cornice. Constructed in 1909, the Commercial style warehouse was once a Tobacco Prizery and Reordering Plant. A 2010 renovation restored the deteriorating structure, refitting the factory interior with 25 luxury lofts. Workers repaired and replaced damaged roof and aging bricks, as well as reinstalled window sashes to match a single historical example found in the building’s storage. The newly renovated building remains a mainstay of Blackstone Historic District, as the project preserved both the structure’s industrial character and its arresting façade.

Blackstone Lofts, Blackstone, VA After

Blackstone Lofts, Blackstone, VA Before

Seaboard/Wainwright Building, Norfolk, VA

Seaboard/Wainwright Building, Norfolk, VA

Erected in 1926, the Seaboard Air Line Railway Building remains Norfolk’s only large-scale commercial example of the late Gothic Revival style.  The nine-story building was one of the most important commissions of the regionally prominent firm of Neff and Thompson.

When first constructed, at 92,000 square feet the Seaboard Building contained the most office space of any structure in Norfolk. A reinforced skyscraper, at the time of construction it was also the third tallest building in the city. The building has an unusual V-shape and a largely intact exterior. The lobby retains most of its notable Gothic Revival decorative details.

Seaboard/Wainwright Building, Norfolk, VA

Previous tenants also render the building significant. Founded in 1832, the Seaboard Air Line Railway was a major player in the east coast market, and consisted of nineteen railroads prior to the Great Depression. The company moved both passengers and freight along the coast. Prior to WWII, however, the Seaboard Air Line Railway relocated and the Wainwright Realty Corporation occupied the Seaboard Building. The word “Wainwright” remains emblazoned in the historic limestone façade above the decorative heraldic entry arch.

The building is eligible under Criterion C for Architecture as an excellent and rare example of large-scale non-religious Gothic Revival architecture in the City of Norfolk.  It is also eligible under Criterion A for Commerce as the purpose built headquarters for the Seaboard Air Line Railway.

CPG wrote the register nomination for the Seaboard/Wainwright Building and also handled the tax credit application for its most recent renovation. Formerly doctors’ offices, the updated Wainwright Building now houses popular downtown apartments. While historic features were carefully preserved, modern amenities were also added. The building also possesses a small rooftop addition, barely visible from the street, which provides residents with access to a dog run, a clubhouse space, and far-reaching views of the Norfolk harbor

 

117 S. Lee St., Alexandria, VA

117 S. Lee St, Alexandria, VA After

The Alexandria Historic District achieved designation as a National Historic Landmark District in 1946, only the third neighborhood to gain this distinction at the time. Overlooking the Potomac River and Washington D.C., the neighborhood contains a number of Federal structures, as well as other architectural styles from the 18th and 19th centuries.

117 S. Lee St, Alexandria, VA

117 S. Lee St., a brick dwelling constructed in 1870, had a crumbling foundation and poor drainage, allowing water to seep into the basement. To remedy the problem, a structural engineer oversaw the digging out and reinforcing of the foundation. Further exterior renovations included replacing inappropriate, modern mortar with mortar specially matched to the original blend. Mid-twentieth century front steps were replaced with stone stairs oriented toward the street, replicating the design original to the house. Interior updates took into account the owner’s needs while preserving the house’s unique architectural features.

316 E. Bank St, Petersburg, VA

At the outset of this project, the exterior walls of 316 E. Bank Street were in fair to poor condition. An unfortunate roof slant had caused water pooling on part of the historic roof, leading to severe deterioration, and vegetation had begun growing between the bricks of the walls. Many of the property’s windows were bricked over or boarded up. The interior of the building fared similarly. The owner of the property proposed a major overhaul, changing the former Mortimer Williams Peanut Factory into 27 residential units and a single retail bay. Construction was completed in three phases, and the finished property retains a fashionable industrial feel. Exposed beams and brick walls dot many of the apartments, in keeping with the structure’s 20thc. Commercial style.

The repurposing of the Mortimer Williams Peanut Factory epitomizes the development potential of former industrial buildings. With aid from CPG, the restoration of 316 E. Bank St. made the owner eligible for federal and state tax credits equalling 45% of the project’s total cost.

316 E. Bank St. After

316 E. Bank St

113 S. Lee St, Alexandria, VA

113 S. Lee St Before

113 S. Lee St. After

Built in 1803, 113 S. Lee Street sits on a relatively small urban lot, the kind common to the Alexandria Historic District. By 1933, the dwelling had been gutted, leaving no interior doors and extensive deterioration. Although the home subsequently underwent decades of rehabilitation, in 2010 owners began a second phase of restoration. Renovations restored the dwelling’s copper roof and removed paint from the exterior, which had eroded the mortar. Much of the work performed on the home’s interior replaced wooden features that had been salvaged and sold by a previous occupant.

531 Warren Crescent, Norfolk, VA

531 Warren Crescent

Previous owners of 531 Warren Crescent added then-modern touches to the property; current owners wished to renovate the home’s first floor in keeping with its architectural integrity. Restoration included reinstating the kitchen and dining rooms to their original locations and replacing some of the house’s historical features. The discovery of a long-forgotten pocket door, tucked away in the garage, and the uncovering of the kitchen’s sealed fireplace allowed renovators to remain almost entirely true to the rooms’ original layout. Additional work included restoring and replacing the c.1900 windows and doors that supply character to the handsome shingle home.  CPG helped this owner obtain state tax credits to offset the cost of these renovations.

Aspen Lawn, Southampton County

 

Aspen Lawn, Southampton County, VA | Before

Aspen Lawn, Southampton County, VA | Before

Aspen Lawn, Southampton County, VA | After

Aspen Lawn, Southampton County, VA | After

At the beginning of an extensive project begun in 1997, Aspen Lawn was uninhabitable. The early nineteenth century home had been vacant since the 1960s, and although it had been ‘patched’ multiple times, it was never updated. Descendants of the house’s original owners renovated the dwelling, rebuilding three walls of the crumbling foundation, replacing rotting wood and torn plaster, and installing a modern kitchen, bathrooms, electricity, and HVAC. The front porch was reconstructed using historic photos and ghost lines on the dwelling’s weatherboard siding. Utilizing state tax credits, owners were able to completely transform the Federal/Greek Revival-inspired home.

207 Tazewell Avenue, Cape Charles, VA

207 Tazewell Avenue Cape Charles, VA | Before

207 Tazewell Avenue Cape Charles, VA | Before

207 Tazewell Avenue, Cape Charles, VA | After

207 Tazewell Avenue, Cape Charles, VA | After

This early twentieth century beach rental cottage was in need of significant repairs and updating when the project began in 2010.   The project included reopening the side porch, which had been enclosed in the 1970s, and the recreation of the historic stairs based upon historic remnants. This project is a good example of the issues involved with both updating a property to meet modern code requirements while also retaining, or even restoring, historic elements. State and Federal credits were used for this income producing property and the project was completed in 2011.

Portsmouth Catholic High School, Portsmouth, VA

Portsmouth Catholic High School 1898, Portsmouth, VA

Portsmouth Catholic High School 1898, Portsmouth, VA

Portsmouth Catholic High School almost became the subject of the first test case of RLUIPA. The property owner, Monumental Methodist Church, applied for approval to demolish the building to accommodate additional parking. The City of Portsmouth’s Commission of Architectural Review denied the application and a multi-year battle with the City ensued. The 1891 school had been enveloped on three sides by a 1957 addition, thus obscuring its historic architectural features. After agreeing to a compromise through binding arbitration, the City of Portsmouth became responsible for rehabilitation of the building, while the church was allowed parking on the rest of the site.

Through an RFP process, a developer was selected to rehabilitate the school using state and fe deral tax credits. CPG acted as consultant to the developer to ensure the overall rehabilitation project, including reconstruction of the missing bell tower, met the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation. The project received the historic tax credits and the building is currently used as an architectural office; it is a gateway to one of the City’s most prestigious historic districts.

Portsmouth Catholic High School Portsmouth, VA | Before

Portsmouth Catholic High School Portsmouth, VA | Before

Portsmouth Catholic High School Portsmouth, VA | After

Portsmouth Catholic High School Portsmouth, VA | After

Southern Bagging Company Warehouse, Norfolk, VA

Southern Bagging Co. Warehouse Norfolk, VA | Before

Southern Bagging Co. Warehouse Norfolk, VA | Before

The Southern Bagging Company Building in Norfolk, VA was renovated for use as a commercial gym using both Virginia and Federal tax credits. The 45,000 square foot warehouse was individually listed on the Virginia Landmarks Register and National Register of Historic Places for its association with Norfolk’s industrial heritage. The building, constructed in 1918, was originally used for the manufacture and bagging of cotton products; most recently used as a restaurant, it was vacant but retained much of its industrial character.

Southern Bagging Co. Warehouse Norfolk, VA | After

Southern Bagging Co. Warehouse Norfolk, VA | After

As a result of the rehabilitation project, the warehouse was updated with modern systems, stairs and an elevator while retaining the historic heavy post and beam framing and other character defining industrial features within its three million dollar construction budget. As the tax credit consultant, CPG was responsible for coordinating the needs of the corporate gym owner with the requirements of the historic tax credit process in order to ensure that the character of the building was retained during the course of the rehabilitation.

Through continuous coordination with the architect and contractor, the project was completed on time and within the budget, and was recognized for its success as the only featured historic rehabilitation tax credit project in the November 2008 issue of Heritage News, an online publication of the National Park Service.

Mallonee School, Hopewell, VA

Mallonee School Hopewell, VA | Before

Mallonee School Hopewell, VA | Before

Schools were historically the center of each community or neighborhood however, as educational requirements change, they are often abandoned for more technologically advanced and larger buildings. Numerous communities have preserved and reused their historic schools as magnet schools, community centers and cultural centers. In some instances, when a public use is not identified, these schools have been turned over to the private sector for rehabilitation. These schools have been successfully converted into senior, affordable and market rate housing as well as artist space.

Mallonee School Hopewell, VA | After

Mallonee School Hopewell, VA      | After

CPG has consulted with both private and non-profit entities who have successfully reused historic schools to ensure their continued presence in the community landscape. We have also worked with several jurisdictions to get historically significant schools listed on the Virginia Landmarks Register and National Register of Historic Places.

The Mallonee School in Hopewell, VA had been vacant for several years before the City of Hopewell issued an RFP soliciting proposals for its reuse. Situated immediately adjacent to the high school football field, the property offered a prime opportunity for residential units. The building was converted to apartments while retaining the historic character of the school including chalkboards, classroom configuration and primary corridors.

Jones Building, Suffolk, VA

Jones Building Marquee Suffolk, VA | Before

Jones Building Marquee Suffolk, VA | Before

The Jones Building in Suffolk, VA originally housed four retail bays and a movie theater on the ground floor. A fire in the mid-1980’s nearly destroyed the building. The movie theater was burned to the ground, and made way for a surface parking lot behind the building. The theater lobby, which had been the central bay in the series of retail spaces, was opened to create a walkway through to the parking area. Fragments of the historic marquee remained, but were clad in vinyl and aluminum. The upper floors were converted to efficiency apartments and the building was deteriorating rapidly.

Jones Building Marquee Suffolk, VA | After

Jones Building Marquee Suffolk, VA | After

New owners acquired the building and undertook a complete restoration. The original theater lobby bay was reintroduced, the marquee reconstructed based on historic photographs, and the upper floor apartments were converted into luxury units. The first floor now houses five related retail and office suites, and the building continues to contribute to the character of the historic district.

Chevra T’helim, Portsmouth, VA

Chevra T'helim Portsmouth, VA | Before

Chevra T’helim Portsmouth, VA | Before

Chevra T’helim Synagogue was the vision of four Portsmouth families. Constructed c1918, it was the center of the Orthodox community in Portsmouth for decades. By the mid-1980s, the congregation had dwindled and the building was left vacant. After years of neglect, the Friends of Chevra T’helim purchased the building and completely rehabilitated it for use as a Jewish Museum and Cultural Center.

Chevra T'helim Portsmouth, VA | After

Chevra T’helim Portsmouth, VA | After

In order to offset the costs of the rehabilitation, the Friends group contracted with CPG to assist with obtaining historic tax credits. CPG worked with Hanbury Evans Wright Vlattas & Co., the project architects, to ensure that building code and ADA requirements were met in a manner which did not detract from the historic building. The building remains an active part of Old Town Portsmouth and is open regularly for tours, lectures and musical events.

Byrd and Baldwin Brothers, Norfolk, VA

Byrd and Baldwin Brothers Steakhouse Norfolk, VA | Before

Byrd and Baldwin Brothers Steakhouse Norfolk, VA | Before

Now a favorite downtown Norfolk restaurant, this building suffered from a major fire prior to its restoration. The current owners are responsible for planning and implementing the entire project, which includes an attractive formal dining area, a basement level bar, and full restaurant kitchen in addition to a luxury condominium on the upper floor.

Byrd and Baldwin Brothers Steakhouse Norfolk, VA | After

Byrd and Baldwin Brothers Steakhouse Norfolk, VA | After

The fire gutted the interior, leaving few historic features intact, which allowed the owners to finish the space as they wished. Since the historic exterior was nearly unchanged, the owners undertook a meticulous restoration of the façade.

CPG assisted with the historic tax credit application, helping the owner to secure both state and federal credits.

Brewer Jewelry Company, Suffolk, VA

Brewer Jewelry Co. Suffolk, VA | After

Brewer Jewelry Co. Suffolk, VA | After

The Brewer Jewelry Company Building located on W. Washington Street in Suffolk, VA was renovated using historic rehabilitation tax credits, and completed in 2006. Built around the turn of the 20th century in the commercial style, the building located at 156 W. Washington Street housed several businesses during the 20th century.

Brewer Jewelry Co. Suffolk, VA | Before

Brewer Jewelry Co. Suffolk, VA | Before

At an unknown date, the entire façade was clad in synthetic stone and stucco, covering the historic windows and details which gave the building its character. During the course of the project, the developer removed the modern cladding and restored the historic character defining features on both the interior and exterior of the building. The two story building was then converted into a restaurant on the first floor with an office above.

This owner received over $100,000 in state tax credits and over $80,000 in federal tax credits to offset the cost of this renovation. This building also spurred adjacent property owners to undertake tax credit rehabilitation projects on five other buildings in the 100 block of W. Washington Street to date.

417 Prince Street, Alexandria, VA

417 Prince Street Alexandria, VA | Before

417 Prince Street Alexandria, VA | Before

The Virginia Historic Rehabilitation tax credits are available to non-income producing properties, such as private homes. Homeowners hire CPG to guide them through project planning and, as necessary, work with the architect and contractor to develop designs which meet client needs and tax credit program requirements, prior to undertaking renovation of their historic homes.

417 Prince Street Alexandria, VA | After

417 Prince Street Alexandria, VA | After

CPG’s list of completed private residential projects extends to most regions of Virginia and represents a range of house types and project budgets. An example of an ongoing residential rehabilitation tax credit project we are working on in Alexandria is the private residence located at 417 Prince Street. The property owner acquired the residence in 1997, and has been able to use the Virginia Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit to offset 25% of the cost of updating the dwelling.

201 Linden Avenue, Suffolk, VA

201 Linden Ave Suffolk, VA | Before

201 Linden Ave Suffolk, VA | Before

201 Linden Ave Suffolk, VA | After

201 Linden Ave Suffolk, VA | After

 

This property was in poor condition at the outset of this project. Though it had been partially renovated by the previous property owner, major work was still required in order to properly restore the dwelling. CPG worked to ensure that the next phase of rehabilitation work enhanced the historic character of the dwelling. A major renovation of a modern garage and complete landscaping were also a part of this project; all of the work was undertaken in a way which complimented the historic house.

The dwelling was on the 2008 Historic Garden Week tour sponsored by the Garden Club of Virginia.

Allmand-Archer House, Norfolk, VA

Allmand Archer House Interior, Norfolk, VA

Allmand Archer House Interior, Norfolk, VA

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1971, the Allmand-Archer House is a c1790 masonry building originally constructed for residential use; it has most recently been in commercial and office use. There is an easement on the building which has been held by VDHR since 1977.

Allmand Archer House, Norfolk, VA

Allmand Archer House, Norfolk, VA

Several inappropriate exterior treatments have been introduced in the past twenty years, including digging out the basement approximately 3 feet and inserting a modern concrete foundation, and two layers of modern stucco treatment have trapped moisture in the building. In addition, the building was hit by a car in the mid-1980s, and was most recently owned by a non-profit organization with limited funds resulting in substantial deferred maintenance.
When the building was recently purchased for use as an attorney’s office, it was in an advanced state of disrepair and had major structural problems. Through extensive consultation with VDHR (the easement holder), the CPG was able to assist the property owner in obtaining both approval for treatment of the building through the easement program as well as the state and federal historic rehabilitation tax credit program.