2019 Rhody's celebrate MHA project Lofts at Lyman Mill

MHA project Lofts at Lyman Mill in North Providence, Rhode Island received a Rhody Award for Historic Preservation on October 6, 2019 at the annual awards ceremony presented by Preserve Rhode Island and RI Historical Preservation & Heritage Commission. The owners of the building, Robert Terino, Anthony Santoro and John Santoro, were awarded a Historic Preservation Project Award for their careful preservation of the historic Lymansville Company Mill into contemporary apartments with modern amenities.

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Press Release from Rhody Awards: Lymansville Company Mill was built in 1884-1887 along the banks of the Woonasquatucket River in North Providence. A. Albert Sack built this textile manufacturing plant and achieved great success using a DIY business model: the Mill sold worsted fabrics directly to garment manufacturers, eliminating the middleman. After the eventual decline of manufacturing, the mill was largely occupied by tenants in the jewelry industry. Robert Terino and the Santoro family (who all grew up in the neighborhood & whose family worked in the Mill) purchased the property in 1986. By the mid-2000’s, the jewelry industry was fading, and they planned to sell the aging building to developers. When the deal fell through, the partners decided to redevelop the building themselves. In 2012, they devised a plan to create 109 market-rate apartments in the Mill. The Town provided a tax treaty, and the owners provided private capital, took on debt, and qualified for state and federal historic tax credits to fund the development. The Mill is now ready for the next hundred years. A pair of original windows, discovered inside a wall, became the model for replacements. Salvaged wood flooring graces the hallways. Family-friendly amenities include a pet-washing station, dog parks, and an electric car charging station. Today, the Lofts at Lyman Mill are 100% occupied, a preservation success story for do-it-yourselfers everywhere.

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The Lofts at Lyman Mill offer a new chance to the once struggling and threatened building. The addition of high-quality market-rate apartments to North Providence brings new residents and an increased tax base to the town. MHA congratulates the owners and the rest of the project team on a successful preservation effort.