Historic Buildings May Get New Lease on Life

OMAHA (KPTM)- Historic buildings that have seen better days may have a new lease on life because Nebraska now has a law that gives tax credits to people to fix them up. "Not all buildings can be saved, but there are a lot of good ones that can be," said Albert Macchietto. Macchietto is an architect at Alley-Poyner-Macchietto Architects. The firm has remodeled many historic buildings throughout Omaha. "Sometimes the old buildings actually have really good bones," said Macchietto. Macchietto and his company are remodeling the old 'Aksarben Meats' building near 24th and Vinton street. "It was actually called the 'Thiessen Pickle Building' when it was actually built back in 1933," said Macchietto. Macchietto said the new Historic Tax Credit will help the developer get started on the project. He said the plan is to have 20 two, three, and four bedroom apartments throughout the building. He said the developer plans to set aside five units for children with special needs. "Most projects of this kind have difficulty trying to find all the funds needed to make them work," said Macchietto.The law gives a 20 percent tax credit against the first $5 million in qualified expenses for a project, so the maximum credit per project is $1 million per project. There will be a total of $15 million in credits available for developers for the next four years, from 2015-2018, and unused credits carry onto the following years. "We're a little late to the game here but it's needed because there's a lot of projects like this one that just can't quite close the gap and become real projects," said Macchietto. Macchietto said Missouri, Iowa, and Kansas all have 'Historic Tax Credits.' Macchietto said he believes it'll help development throughout the state. "Buildings get rehabilitated ultimately going to berevenue producing properties back for the city," said Macchietto. Tax payers would be eligible for the tax credit at the beginning of 2015. Applications will be regulated by the Nebraska State Historical Society and the Nebraska Department of Revenue.