Downtown Building Owner Seeks Tax Increment Financing

Downtown Building Owner Seeks Tax Increment Financing

Renovation work is much more than he expected. He is asking for $300,000 in TIF assistance.
(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) When Rick Gilmore made a $50,000 investment and bought a downtown building two years ago, he knew it would take some work.

"We had to make the building watertight," said Gilmore. "We also discovered the windows were in such terrible shape, they had to be replaced. We also put a new roof on and the old exterior had problems."

Add new electrical, new elevators and everything else needed to get the building up and running, and it turned into a $2 million project.

"It's a big project, a lot more than I anticipated," Gilmore said.

So much so, Gilmore is asking the City of St. Joseph for help; requesting Tax Increment Financing (TIF) assistance.

"The council has made it a priority and a goal to work on downtown revitalization," said Clint Thompson, Director of Planning and Community Development for the city.

The city council will review Gilmore's request for his building at 107 South 6th St. next week. The downtown corridor is already in a TIF district.

"So, there is a public benefit from revitalizing the downtown," Thompson said. "Chamber of Commerce when they're trying to attract business to St. Joseph, that company, when they're visiting town, always want them to visit downtown."

Gilmore says his renovated building will be a plus for downtown.

"It's in a section of downtown St. Joe for when they come off of 229 and drive up Edmond, it's very visible to the downtown area," said Gilmore.

The building will feature retail on the first floor, then 12 high-end apartment units on the floors above.

"I think it's very important to have something to offer people if we want St. Joseph to grow," Gilmore said.

This is just the next step in a downtown plan.

"It's really focused on how to revitalize the urban core," Thompson said. "To create a road map or a blueprint, per se, of how to really not just one particular project, but a series of small steps that will change and impact the downtown area."

Gilmore's TIF request is for nearly $300,000. The building was built in the 1890s and was originally the Weigel-Roth Furniture building.
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