Council grants tax treaty for American Insulated Wire

Council grants tax treaty for American Insulated Wire

The former American Insulated Wire Corp. complex is being converted into a mixed-use commercial and residential complex. The Pawtucket City Council last week granted a five-year tax treaty to the developers of the project. (Valley Breeze photo by Ethan Shorey)
Big revenue expected from development

PAWTUCKET - The City Council last week approved a five-year tax treaty for the American Insulated Wire property, a huge former industrial complex at 413 Central Ave.

Council members praised developer Chris Starr, of Starr Development Partners, and partners in Brady Sullivan Properties, for being willing to invest so much money in Pawtucket.

The developers have already proven successful with the redevelopment of the Slater Cotton Mill, and are showing that they mean business on Central Avenue as well, said council members.

The transformed complex, when complete, will have 139 apartments and a substantial amount of commercial space, according to Starr.

The residential part of the project is expected to be done within three months, while the commercial side should be done by the fall, he said.

According to Tax Assessor Bob Burns, the developers started working on the building before they came to city officials about a tax treaty.

The property is currently bringing in $67,414 in annual property taxes, said Burns, but by year five, it will mean $296,414 in yearly tax revenue to the city.

A number of commercial tenants have been retained from the old complex, said Starr, and the developers expect the remainder of the space to fill up quickly. For the rental units, mostly with one or two bedrooms and some with three, they expect it to take about 10 to 12 units for full occupancy.

Councilor Tom Hodge said he's always "cautious" about handing out tax treaties, but he has no doubts about the one for the old American Insulated Wire building. The complex takes up "eight to 10 city blocks," said Hodge, and he's been impressed with how the developers have "transformed the building on the exterior and improved the entire neighborhood for the city."

Councilor John Barry, who heads the finance committee that initially gave the nod to the tax treaty, said the project further "revitalizes" an area that includes Stop & Shop and new Walgreens and TD Bank stores.

"We're very fortunate that you're investing in this community and we appreciate it," Barry told Starr.

Councilor Albert Vitali Jr. was also among those who thanked Starr and his business partners, noting they've taken "an eyesore" of a site that was "getting worse by the year" and are turning it into a "great addition" to the neighborhood.