The Community Development Commission has approved $6 million in TIF funding and a land sale for Englewood Connect. Located at 6204 S. Green behind the Englewood Square redevelopment, the project site is currently vacant land along with the historic firehouse. Led by McLaurin Development and Farpoint Development, the project was chosen as the winner of the Englewood Invest South/West RFP back in March 2021.
Designed by SOM and TNS Studio, the Englewood Connect vision is an entrepreneurial and community hub that will be an incubator for small businesses and entrepreneurs. The new center will create a local commerce and culinary ecosystem, foster greater connectivity and pedestrian access, and provide flexible public spaces. These spaces will be accessible to all local residents year-round and connected to the surrounding neighborhoods
Built in phases the first step will be to restore the landmark historic fire station that was originally built in 1929. Now vacant, the transformation will see it become a commercial kitchen and venue space for the neighborhood. The second phase will see the construction of a flexible public space called the Green Street Commons and the Englewood Living Room, a proposed pavilion with operable doors and windows, which will be open year-round, allowing for markets, co-working spaces, exhibitions, and places for the community to gather and engage with one another.
The $14 million project will be funded through the proposed $6 million in TIF funding, $7 million in debt, and $800,000 in owner equity. Entering into a redevelopment agreement (RDA), the TIF funding would be paid out in three stages. The first payment would be for $750,000 after the closing of the RDA. The second installment would be of $3.25 million upon the completion of Phase 1, and the final $2 million would be paid upon completion of the entire project. As part of the financial structure, the city will write down the land to just $1. BOWA Construction will serve as the general contractor.