PORT TOWNSEND — One of the historic downtown buildings will receive emergency renovations with funds from the city’s Community Development Block Grant.
The Terry Building, built circa 1890 at 919 Washington St., was approved by the Port Townsend City Council on Monday night for a $40,000 low-interest loan for scaffolding that will help a contractor secure the crown, repair the parapet and re-roof the building.
The loan comes from a city fund through the Port Townsend Main Street Program and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, according to city documents.
It has a 10-year term with a 5 percent annual interest rate, and interest charges will be rebated at certain percentages if it’s paid off early, the documents said.
“The Terry Building had time-sensitive roofing and parapet repairs needed so it was considered on an emergency basis,” said Mari Mullen, the executive director of the Main Street Program.
Mullen said the fund is a resource for property owners to make improvements to their buildings to help them achieve historic preservation goals, improve public safety or enhance the buildings through facade improvements such as painting, roof or window repairs and repointing brick.
It has a minimum of $1,000 and a maximum of $40,000, according to city documents.
“Dozens of buildings in Port Townsend have benefited from this program, and we think it has been an important tool for historic preservation and enhancement of the historic districts over the years,” Mullen said.
The program, which began in 1988, is available for property owners in the commercial historic districts both downtown and uptown, she added.
Terry building owner Russell C. Welch filed the application Feb. 5 with a contractor’s estimate between $38,000 and $47,000.
The building has an outside perimeter of about 2,000 square feet with three floors that total about 5,000 square feet inside, according to city documents.
The middle floor is retail and the basement once was used as a nightclub, the application said.
“The third floor is hopefully going to open soon as a hotel [with] four rooms for overnight rental,” Welch wrote.
He also said he would like to reopen the basement eventually, but it’s currently being renovated and used for work space to rehabilitate the building.
“We had wind damage from gale-force winds last winter,” Welch wrote about the damages. “The winds blew the large and very heavy top decorative crown and corbels loose [and] detached some parts off the building. The parapet wall is also severely damaged; it’s cracked deep in its center.”
He said the parapet wall visibly moved as a contractor leaned on it while they worked to secure pieces of the metal flashing.
Welch also said he hopes to secure a grant for $25,000 for historic front facades to repaint and light the front of the building.
The Main Street Economics/HUD loan committee approved the application unanimously on Feb. 13, Mullen said.
The request was part of the city’s consent agenda Monday and is expected to take about a month to complete.
Jefferson County Managing Editor Brian McLean can be reached at 360-385-2335, ext. 6, or at [email protected].