Donate today to help us protect endangered properties!
The goal of the Endangered Properties Revolving Fund is to secure endangered properties, protect them, and then market them to a conservation buyer who will agree to rehab the building to certain standards. This model is used by the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation, Historic Macon, Historic Savannah, and other non-profits utilizing revolving funds.
WHAT IS A REVOLVING FUND?
A revolving fund is a financing tool used traditionally in historic preservation projects. In Morgan County’s case, the Endangered Properties Revolving Fund is uniquely designed to protect historic structures AND openspace. Now capitalized after the sale of the first project (the Foster-Thomason-Miller House pictured above), the fund will be used to 1) acquire significant and endangered properties that include both historic structures and undeveloped land through donation, purchase, or option agreements, 2) protect the properties with conservation easements or other preservation agreements, 3) market/sell those properties to conservation buyers, and then 4) reinvest the proceeds back into the revolving fund for the next project.
Because the capital in this fund revolves from project to project, this Endangered Properties Revolving Fund will not only protect farms, forests, and front porches for this generation, it will be a tool that future generations can use to sustain their Morgan County.
If you would like to know more about the Endangered Properties Revolving Fund or support our efforts in developing this fund, please contact us.
Current Revolving Fund Projects
The Seedhouse – 137 S. First St, Madison (aka Helen’s Beauty Shop)
On October 30th, the Revolving Fund purchased 137 S. First Street, a blighted c. 1899 historic cotton seed house in the heart of downtown Madison. Known most recently as Helen’s Beauty Shop, the building has been vacant for 10 years. The Revolving Fund plans to rehabilitate the building into a functioning commercial space, replacing blight with an energy efficient (hopefully Earthcraft certified) office/retail space. The Revolving Fund will own and lease the property for five years and then sell it to recoup its investment, replenishing the fund.
Given that the private development market was not responding to this blighted, non-performing asset, we thought it was time for the Revolving Fund to step in. We are excited rehabilitating the building and about pursuing Earthcraft certification for energy efficiency by implementing solar, pervious pavers, rain barrels, and the like. We also plan for the building to serve as a case study for other property owners interested in green building techniques.
165 acre Farm
Second, in addition to saving a historic property in downtown Madison, the Revolving Fund is also currently working in northern Morgan County to permanently protect 165 acres of farmland, timberland, and hardwood forest along Bramble Creek. The farm has prime agricultural soils, significant agricultural infrastructure, healthy stands of working forest, beautiful bottomlands, and abundant wildlife. It’s a serene and beautiful place and an important piece of Morgan County’s critical mass of farmland.
Horse Branch Creek Trail TDR project
Third, the Revolving Fund will help secure a critical link for a future trail that will eventually connect the Morgan County School campus to Horse Branch Creek Trail. We will assist the landowner in this TDR project by protecting eighteen acres of greenspace along Horse Branch Creek with a conservation easement. The permanently protected land will then be donated to the City for the trail system.
To read more about these projects, click here for the press release.
Past Revolving Fund Projects
WE THANK THE FOLLOWING DONORS FOR MAKING THIS PROGRAM A REALITY: