Developers plan 27-unit lofts at Feldman building

Developers plan 27-unit lofts at Feldman building

The former Feldman Furniture building at 49 North Union St. is proposed to contain 27 residential units in a redevelopment project.

PAWTUCKET – Developer Michael Leshinsky and representatives from Nexus Property Development are seeking to create 27 residential units titled the Nexus Lofts at the former Feldman Furniture building at 49 North Union St. in the heart of the city’s downtown.

Leshinsky, who is also working on the potential purchase of nearby 217 Main St., reiterated this week that he and others are looking to bring new life to “a bunch of buildings in downtown Pawtucket” through mill conversions.

The request from Leshinsky, Nicholas D’Agnillo and Nexus Holdings LLC for a 10-year tax stabilization agreement to help fund development of the apartment building is introduced on the City Council agenda for Wednesday, Aug. 7.

Also on that agenda is a proposal for a 180-unit market rate residential project off Freight Street from developer Kenneth Zuckerman, which The Breeze reported on last week.

The former Feldman Furniture building, built in 1898, has been mostly vacant for decades. It was originally horse stables in the 1800s before later becoming a car garage and then the warehouse for Major Electric Company before becoming a furniture store.

“Now we’re trying to turn it into housing,” said Leshinsky, adding that he’s very confident of the project getting done.

The building is located just around the corner from The Times building and Beswick building on Exchange Street, which are both being redeveloped in separate projects at the city’s gateway. Leshinsky previously had a deal in place with the owners of The Times before that project, which would have included the Gamm Theatre, fell through.

Leshinsky’s company, Leshinsky Finance, is offering up the request for a stabilization agreement to the city on behalf of Nexus.

“The project will add value to the city and local area,” he wrote to the council. “The cost of development is high, and the tax stabilization agreement is needed for funding.”

Stabilization agreements create a structured phasing of taxes that doesn’t account for the full value of improvements until a project is done.

Leshinsky said the developers have applied for federal tax credits and other incentives they’re seeking for the project.

The total pre-construction value of the target property at 49 North Union St. is $466,300 according to an application to the city, and the estimated taxable value of the proposed improvements is $2.83 million.

The first floor would stay under Nexus Property management for office space and retail, said Leshinsky, and apartments would be located on the second and third floors.

These market rate apartments would be very nicely done, he said, but with standard rents.