Revitalizing a Historic Block

Rochester, New York

The rehabilitation of Center City Place transformed six formerly vacant and underutilized buildings, which share a block with City Hall, into 41 naturally affordable residential units and eight commercial spaces totaling 14,000 sf. The project consists of six adjacent, mixed-use buildings located in the heart of Rochester, and will feature energy efficient lighting and ENERGY STAR® certified furnaces and appliances.

Like many historic downtowns across upstate New York, Rochester suffered a sharp decline in economic activity following the loss of manufacturing jobs during the Digital Revolution. Downtown developments like this one that offer opportunities to live, work and play are one way that CPC and its municipal partners can breathe new life into upstate cities like Rochester.

The rehabilitation brings new opportunities for retail and quality downtown housing while preserving the brick façades and hardwood floors of the registered historic buildings, which were constructed between 1900 and 1920.

In a market that is saturated with very high-end apartments on one end of the spectrum and regulated low-income housing on the other, this project is meeting the demand in the middle: for updated, quality housing that is naturally affordable for moderate and middle-income households.

The buildings are conveniently located within walking distance to community amenities like Kodak headquarters, Monroe Community College’s downtown campus, the High Falls entertainment district and Frontier Field baseball stadium.

CPC provided a $7.9 million construction loan and is committed to providing a $4.6 million permanent loan funded through its partnership with the New York State Common Retirement Fund.

Like many small building projects throughout New York State, financing for this rehabilitation came together through several partnerships and sources. The project benefits from a total of $2.9 million in Historical Rehabilitation Tax credits from both New York State and the federal government. Five of the buildings also received Empire State Development grants totaling $950,000 through Restore NY, a downtown revitalization initiative that helps fund rehabilitations of blighted structures.