A new report by researchers at Rutgers University examines the economic impact of the Federal Historic Tax Credit. Enacted by Congress in 1981 as part of an economic stimulus package, the Federal Historic Tax Credit (HTC) provides a 20% income tax credit for the rehabilitation of certified income-producing historic properties.
This study presents information regarding the economic and other benefits of the tax credit (e.g., providing incentives for such projects as the Elm Street Center (image, right) and the International Civil Rights Museum that spur downtown revitalization). Recurring year-by-year economic returns from the use of the HTC include enhanced tourism in areas of heritage and cultural travel (a multi-billion dollar industry); the historic tax credit providing adaptively-reused and other commercial space for businesses that annually have a payroll and tax payments (such as Revolution Mill); and the positive federal historic tax credit investment impact on property values, which which in turn have annual tax, wealth, and other benefits.
Historic preservation is already well-known to boost investor and neighborhood confidence and promote community-wide revitalization, as seen in center city neighborhoods such as Aycock, College Hill, Southside, and Fisher Park (image, right). In addition, historic preservation results in harder to measure enhanced “quality of life” gains that increase the desirability of cities with character and sense of place. All of these factors are critical in understanding the full impact of historic preservation, as this study begins to explore.
You can read more about the impact of historic preservation on job creation, the economy, housing diversity, and tax revenue here. You can also explore a number of case studies that demonstrate the breadth, and depth of tax credits, and explain how these tools might be applied in other cities, such as Greensboro!
In partnership with National Trust Forum News