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Nov. 19, 2013

Pacific Northwest College of Art Secures Milestone Loan to Renovate Old Post Office

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor

The Portland Development Commission approved one of the largest loans it has ever awarded, a financing package for the Pacific Northwest College of Art. The $20.3 million in financial aid will help the non-profit institution renovate an aging facility in the North Park Blocks and turn it into a new campus.   

PNCA will use the funds to turn the former post office at 511 N.W. Broadway in the Pearl District in Portland, a building listed on the National Register of Historic Places, into its new campus. According to OregonLive, the development commission would take the building over from the federal government in order to better manage the use of historic preservation tax credits, and the school would support all ownership costs.

The loan includes $7.6 million in long-term debt and $12.7 million provided via a five-year bridge financing agreement. The local commission’s financing offer was deemed superior to what the institution could have obtained if it had pursued private lenders. The bridge financing will most likely be paid as soon as the college completes its move, as it expects to secure a total of around $12 million in federal New Markets Tax Credits and Historic Tax Credits.

According to the Portland Business Journal, the school will also use $6 million of its own cash in the moving process, due to be completed by 2015. The funds were sourced through the sale of PNCA’s Pearl District headquarters in a deal worth a total of $11.75 million.

Photo Credits: Author M.O. Stevens via Wikimedia Commons under GNU Free Documentation License

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