(PITTSBURGH) Thursday, Oct. 11 Mayor Luke Ravenstahl and the Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation today announced the launch of a new loan program that will spur more retail ventures in historic downtown buildings, furthering the economic growth of downtown. Funding for this new program is being provided by a $500,000 grant from the Colcom Foundation to Landmarks Community Capital (LCC), Pittsburgh History & Landmarks Foundation’s (PHLF) lending subsidiary. This latest initiative is a result of the Mayor’s Downtown Stakeholders Working Group’s effort to create programs that encourage more downtown retail and job creation. The loan program will provide low-interest financing to building owners and first floor retail tenants for often costly improvements related to historic building facades, storefronts and interior spaces.
“I want to thank the Colcom Foundation for their continued support of projects that advance Pittsburgh’s Third Renaissance,” Ravenstahl said. “It is through strong partnerships such as this that we will create more jobs and further the progress you can see now as you walk the Fifth, Forbes and Wood Street corridors. Major new buildings are rising amidst a historic environment that grows more attractive with restoration and quality retail by the day.”
The new loan program builds off of the Mayor and PHLF’s Downtown Preservation Program, which is renovating about a dozen downtown historic buildings with a $4 million grant from Governor Corbett, and complements other programs such as the Mayor’s Storefront Renovation Program and the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership’s Paris to Pittsburgh program.
“The Colcom Foundation responded excitingly to this request because of LCC’s experience and track record in lending throughout the City of Pittsburgh and region,” said Colcom Vice President John Rohe. “This initiative also furthers the Foundation’s existing commitments to the downtown planters, to the tree-lined streets, storefront facades, and the Paris to Pittsburgh program.”
Applications for funding are now available on the LCC’s website at www.landmarkscommunitycapital.org. Loan amounts range from $5,000 to $30,000 and can be paired with other available sources from the Urban Redevelopment Authority, the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership and other lenders.
Arthur Ziegler, President of PHLF, pointed out that this partnership and this collection of tools led by a mayor for a downtown area is unique in the United States, and the outcome will be a revitalization of the downtown that will be a model for cities throughout the country.
Office of Mayor Luke Ravenstahl
512 City County Building | 414 Grant Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15219
telephone: 412-255-2626 | facsimile: 412-255-2687