Restoration funds OK’d: Council approves incentive for old mill's reroofing

A two-story brick building at 701 E. Broadway St. could soon have a new roof after members of the Gainesville City Council recently approved a $100,000 incentive from the Gainesville Economic Development Corp.

A breath of fresh air is about to be brought into some downtown property that city officials say is around 100 years old.

On Tuesday, June 16, members of the Gainesville City Council approved actions of the Gainesville Economic Development Corp. to contribute $100,000 to replace the roof on a two-story brick building at 701 E. Broadway St.

On May 18, the GEDC board of directors agreed to provide the incentive to Super Rustic LLC to help with its development of the property and buildings at 701 E. Broadway, known to many as the area of the old flour mill and ice house, according to information provided to council members. Super Rustic is expected to contribute more than $50,000 toward the roof replacement, as well.

The $100,000 from the GEDC will be paid in two payments, according to council information. One $50,000 payment will be made after Super Rustic purchases the property and the other $50,000 will be given once Super Rustic installs a new roof on the brick building.

GEDC Executive Director Audrey Schroyer said the developers plan to house a coffee roasting warehouse and packaging center in the building.

“Ultimately this project aims to create a mixed-use facility,” Schroyer said while adding that future plans include office and co-working spaces, a hydroponic greenhouse and a business incubator.

The economic development incentive will not be paid if the company does not purchase the property or does not have a new roof installed by December 2021, according to the contract. If the roof is not installed by then, the company has to pay back the GEDC the first $50,000 it received after purchasing the property.

Super Rustic is investing $562,889 in capital improvements and is adding 15 jobs in phase one — five full time and 10 part time — to the area’s workforce, information from the city states. However, city officials stressed the GEDC’s incentive is not for job creation. It is simply to help get a new roof for the two-story brick building that Schroyer believes was built in 1920.

City Manager Barry Sullivan said once something happens to the building, it can’t be rebuilt because it’s located in a flood zone.

“This is not just a business thing, this is also trying to help with deterioration in the downtown area,” Sullivan said.

Information provided by the city shows Corinth-based Super Rustic plans to “lease and activate coffee shop” by August.

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