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historic detroit-shoreway building to undergo $3m renovation

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The 22-unit Sylvia apartment building has been an eyesore ever since it became vacant two years ago when the building's owner died unexpectedly. With nobody to care for the property, Detroit Shoreway neighbors watched as the vacant building, which is nestled mid-block on Franklin Boulevard, fell into disrepair.

Beginning this fall, however, nearby homeowners should have something to celebrate: The Sylvia is slated to receive a $3 million makeover that will preserve this historic structure while adding new neighbors to this well-kept block.

The Sylvia, which features a brick facade, hardwood floors, built-in kitchen display cases, and Tudor archways and doorways, will be trimmed to an 18-unit, mixed income building following a complete renovation by the Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization (DSCDO).

Jenny Spencer, Project Manager with DSCDO, says the Sylvia is part of a neighborhood-wide revitalization trend spurred by the nonprofit's work to preserve its mixed-income character while adding new development. In the past several decades, DSCDO has purchased and renovated 13 historic properties.

"By acquiring, stabilizing and rehabbing multi-family buildings, we've been able to eliminate a lot of our slum and absentee landlord problem," says Spencer. "We've also provided safe, decent, affordable housing and preserved our housing stock."

DSCDO plans to hold a groundbreaking ceremony on Thursday, October 6th. The renovation is being funded with Neighborhood Stabilization Fund dollars through the Cuyahoga County Land Reutilization Corporation and the City of Cleveland, historic tax credits from Huntington National Bank and a bridge loan from the Ohio Capital Corporation for Housing. Enterprise Community Partners and Village Capital Corporation provided predevelopment financing.


Source: Jenny Spencer
Writer: Lee Chilcote
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