City approves $250k loan application

Derrek Vaughn | The Valdosta Daily TimesThe city recently approved a loan for the renovation of the Converse Building located in Downtown Valdosta.

VALDOSTA — The city approved the application for a $250,000 loan for renovations of a historic building downtown.

At the Valdosta City Council meeting last week, council agreed to move forward with a renovation project of 121-123 N. Patterson St. The loan is from Georgia Cities Foundation and does not require money from the city.

The city will instead channel the funds to the Central Valdosta Development Authority, according to city documents. 

The money will go to IDP Building, a real-estate development company. The development will go toward its headquarters as well as one professional office space on the second floor and two commercial retail spaces on the first floor of the building, documents state.

The building is vacant and has been for a number of years. 

City documents state the project is designed to save a historic building and provide key steps for the continued development of Downtown Valdosta. 

The building is a historic structure and recognized as a resource in the Valdosta Commercial Historic District and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

It was built in 1900 for the Converse brothers and is about 9,000 square feet. A. Converse and Sons was one of Valdosta's earliest mercantile establishments. 

At one time, dances were held upstairs in the Armory and at another time the Valdosta Athletic Club occupied an upper floor and had boxing rings for competitions.

The owner intends to maintain as much historical preservation both inside and outside as possible, the city states.

The total investment is estimated to be $1.5 million and the project will bring an estimated 10 jobs to the downtown area, according to the city.

Thomas Lynn is a government and education reporter for The Valdosta Daily Times. He can be reached at (229)244-3400 ext. 1256

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