Downtown Development Authority approves Georgia Cities loan for Broad Street building

The Downtown Development Authority of Augusta approved a $250,000 Georgia Cities Foundation loan for The Johnson Building at 758 Broad St. on Thursday morning.

The loan is one of more than 10 Georgia Cities Foundation loans the DDA has approved this year, opening up funding for developers and property owners in an economic climate where banks are leery about lending.

The Johnson Building underwent a $1.1 million renovation, creating 13 market-rate apartments on the second floor. The ground floor contains commercial space.

“In this economy with banks only loaning 50 percent, this is an excellent program,” said DDA executive director Margaret Woodard. “It’s the bridge.”

Georgia Cities Foundation loans are available for up to 40 percent of the project cost, not to exceed $250,000, and are available after the project is completed. Woodard said the program has allowed projects in downtown Augusta to happen that would not have occurred otherwise.

The Johnson Building has also been approved for a $100,000 Green Loan from the Green Communities Fund, a program of the Georgia Cities Foundation.

In other business, DDA board member Mark Bowling has resigned. The board voted to approve treasurer Cameron Nixon to replace him as vice chair. Board member Scylance Scott was then voted to replace Nixon as treasurer. New board members Natalie Bowen McLeod and Sanford Lloyd were welcomed.

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