When a historic building undergoes renovation, it’s an expensive process that can take years. As a way to preserve Dallas’ historic built environment, the City of Dallas began offering a tax exemption in 1993. The exemption, which is managed by the Office of Historic Preservation, helps owners completing rehabilitation projects to historic properties that are City of Dallas landmarks or contribute to landmark districts.
According to Preservation Dallas, the current version of this program is set to expire at the end of 2020 if no action is taken.
“This program has been incredibly important and helpful to the rehabilitation of both residential and commercial historic properties,” Preservation Dallas said in an advocacy alert. Such high-profile projects that have benefited from tax exemptions include the Knights of Pythias building, which just completed a massive rehabilitation this year and is now the Pittman Hotel.
The renewal of the historic tax exemptions is on the consent agenda at Wednesday’s Dallas City Council meeting, extending the sunset to 2025.
According to the City of Dallas website, the city’s coffers forego just over $4 million over a five year period. With an annual budget that hovers around $3.6 billion, I’d say that the tax exemptions for the renovation and rehabilitation of historic Dallas buildings is well spent.