Revitalizing Downtown through Redevelopment

Project Vitals

Location:
Main Street, Denver Borough
Lancaster County
Slated to open September, 2019

Description:
Redevelopment of iconic building into retail, medical and social services, and apartments

Partner/Borrower:
REAL Life Community Services

Loan Amount/ Project Cost:
$170,000 Pre-Development
$500,000 Mortgage
$3.6 million Total Project Cost

A Historic Property in Decline

REAL Life Community Services, a local non-profit social service agency, approached LHOP with a pressing problem in the Borough and a dream of turning the challenge into a positive new reality for the community. In the center of town on Main Street is an iconic building known as the “Denver House” built in 1864 that served for over 150 years as a welcoming place for food and a clean place to stay. Over the past several years, the property had become blighted, to the point of condemnation, and a public nuisance with many a police call, making it an economic drag, detracting from and hindering further downtown development.

The property had fallen into foreclosure and tax sale. Efforts by REAL to work with the bank holding the mortgages and building owner were not fruitful given the extreme amount of debt tied to the building. As a CDFI, LHOP was able to work in a unique manner with the bank and owner to provide a quick and “safe” landing for the property benefitting the bank, property owner, community and non-profit developer.

Enabling Fresh Beginnings

LHIFT provided the pre-development loan to cover the costs of property clean-up, architectural drawings, zoning and land development plan work and approvals. The building will be transformed into a mixed-use office/retail space and medical/dental/behavioral health services on the first floor, and 10 affordable apartments on the upper two floors. The community is ecstatic about the project and how it will be a catalyst for further development of the downtown.