Saving downtown from dying, through downtown living
June 12, 2011
AN OPEN LETTER TO CHIPLEY CITY LEADERS
Submitted by Prince Eon Menckeberg
The problem for most two-story office buildings in any historic district lies in their functional obsolescence and problematic egress and ingress to the second floors. Most second story office spaces have a problem with handicap or elder client access.
For many investors or owners, the financing for any such property almost always hinges on the income potential for the ground floor, with the second floor space presumed to be storage, hence lowering the appraisal values. Most lending institutions will therefore not make large loans, which keeps sales values for these buildings very low. This results in a lack of interest to invest in downtown buildings.
Until the value of second floor space can show valuable use and increased value our downtown property values will stay low, and interest in them even lower.
As an owner of an old historic building in Historic Downtown Chipley, I am obligated to encourage economic development in conjunction with historic preservation and creating a positive image to attract customers and investors, rekindling community pride, and enhancing the visual quality of the downtown environment.
Although there may be concerns and hesitation regarding downtown living, please consider the following . . .