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CRA's to protect a neighborhood

  • 1.  CRA's to protect a neighborhood

    Posted 07-22-2018 13:26
    Hi everyone!

    Do you have examples of where a Community Redevelopment Area has successfully protected a historic neighborhood?

    I know the terminology might vary by state. Here is Florida, CRA's are created under a specific statutory process, but long-story short, they are tax-increment financing vehicles for designated areas.

    We have a National Register-listed historic district, American Beach, that we are exploring using a CRA for...which has been explored in the past as well, but was not successful at the time. Part of the interest in using this tool is to leverage the TIF funds, but also I think it might be the best thing for the immediate future because we have no local historic preservation ordinance that allows us to create any kind of historic district or local landmarking (yet....). I think that process would take longer than it would for us to pursue a CRA.

    Under the CRA requirements here, you have to create a Master Plan, which I think could have a preservation emphasis. The other good news is that they did get specific zoning districts put into place for the neighborhood about 20 or so years ago, and I think with just some tweaks to those districts, we could put some protections in place.

    Any info is appreciated! Thank you. And if you are interested, google American Beach on Amelia Island. Fascinating history and so important that we make sure it's not lost.

    Adrienne Burke
    Assistant Director
    Nassau County Planning + Economic Opportunity Department
    Yulee, FL

  • 2.  RE: CRA's to protect a neighborhood

    Posted 08-08-2018 15:54


    This isn't really an exact answer to your question – but your post looked lonely out there unanswered and, as someone who is involved in local government tax-based incentives on a regular basis, I certainly understand where you are coming from.

    In Ohio, a CRA, or community reinvestment area, is largely a tax exemption/abatement tool which promotes investment in areas which it covers but does not involve the master plan creation to which you referred. That sounds more like Ohio's new Downtown Redevelopment Districts, akin to a TIF, which allow for service payments to go toward a wider variety of purposes than a typical TIF (public infrastructure). DRDs allow for those funds to instead be spent for things like loans or grants to historic building owners, for loans to non-historic building owners, as well as for contributions to SIDs (special improvement districts) or non-profit organizations that are involved in historic building rehab.

    DRDs cannot be established in residential areas.

    That shared, I am aware of the cities in Ohio which have DRDs or have/are considering them and I would be happy to share that information with you.


    Thomas Palmer
    Galion OH