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FEATURE: Part 2 – Potential Projects in a City of Brunswick Tax Allocation District included in Summary Report

Category: Economic Development

By Lou Phelps, Brunswick Business Journal

September 7, 2017 – After years of talking about it, the City of Brunswick is working to move forward on a major tax allocation district to bring redevelopment to its downtown water front, and out along Rt. 17.  The project could mean millions in increased tax base for the city, revenue that can support future services for residents for years to come.

A number of potential projects are outlined in the final report, issued on August 11, 2017, which used previous studies including the Brunswick 2008 Comprehensive Plan and Blueprint Brunswick.

Potential projects include:

- A Hotel Conference Center at Bay & Newcastle Streets

- Marina Mixed-Use project

- London St. Waterfront Residential projects

- Gloucester & Macon Residential developments

- A Norwich St. Mixed-Use development

- Norwich Infill Residential development

- Gloucester Mixed Use redevelopment

- A new hotel on Newcastle St.

The TAD will also help fund public infrastructure improvements, costs necessary to attract high-quality private redevelopment investment in the historic core consistent with the shared community vision for this area of the City.  That infrastructure cost is estimated to be $16.6 million, which the City intends to fund through the tax allocation through bonds, paid for by the increase in property taxes on private investment that can be financed through TAD programs.  

Creating a TAD gives the City of Brunswick the ability to leverage substantial levels of new private investment to fund construction of infrastructure, public improvements and qualified

redevelopment costs will enable the City to leverage approximately $17 million in TAD funding to attract

$168 million in private investment, a leverage ratio of nearly $9.12 in private dollars invested for every $1 of TAD investment by the City, according to city officials.

And, if completed, the City’s overall taxable value would increase from $312 million to $375 million, an increase in the Digest of over 20.5%. This would result in approximately $63

million in new taxable valuation that would support TAD funding for up to $17 million in needed infrastructure costs, as well as generate new city revenues.

Public Improvements to be Included

In addition to taxable property growth, revenues from the new TAD could support transportation and mobility enhancements - 10% or $ 1,660,000; site specific development activities - 30% at a cost of $ 4,980,000; city infrastructure improvements such as sidewalks and roadways -10% at a cost of $ 1,660,000; public space, landscaping, lighting, and other improvements - 20% at a cost of $ 3,320,000; and other redevelopment initiatives - 30% at a cost of $ 4,980,000. 

The total infrastructure improvements are currently estimated to cost $ 16,600,000.

Another way of breaking down the TAD is private versus public investment.  The market value of new private investment is estimated to be $168,363,691; with the Taxable incremental value at full build out of $ 63,448,004.

And, in addition to stemming the decline in property values that the city has seen over the past eight years, the new development will create substantial growth in property and sales tax revenues for Glynn County and the public School District, as well.

Once all TAD obligations of the district are retired, the City will receive the full property tax increment from the new development created. The City, County and School District will begin receiving the benefit of increased sales tax revenues as soon as development occurs and attracts additional demand to the area.

And, officials believe that the creation of this new economic activity in the Historic District should stimulate the “halo effect” noted in many other communities where new investment in the TAD attracts additional development to adjacent areas around the TAD.

EDITOR's NOTE:  PART 1 of this series can be read here:  http://www.brunswickbusinessjournal.net/main/bbj-edition-news2/economic-development/944-feature-part-1-city-of-brunswick-tax-allocation-district-to-lead-to-historic-core-redevelopment.html

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