ESCANABA - An Escanaba couple and their architect will be honored by the Governor for renovating a historic building into loft apartments and retail space in downtown Escanaba.
Beth and Matt Sviland of Swanee, Inc., and their architect, Barry Polzin Architects of Marquette, recently developed 15 loft-style apartments and three retail spaces in the former Richter Brewery at 1615 Ludington St.
The preservation of the historic building into The Lofts on Ludington has been recognized as one of six projects receiving a 2012 Governor's Awards for Historic Preservation. The ceremony takes place Wednesday morning at the state capitol in Lansing.
Jenny Lancour | Daily Press
Matt Sviland, of Escanaba, at left, talks with Gary Heidel, in the middle, executive director of the Michigan State Housing Development Authority, and Bryan Lijewski, architect for the agency’s State Historic Preservation Office, last fall during a tour of Sviland’s renovation of the Richter Building into The Lofts on Ludington. The project will receive a 2012 Governor’s Award for Historic Preservation at the capitol on Wednesday.
"As first-time developers, we are honored to receive the 2012 Governor's Award for Historic Preservation," said Matt Sviland. "We are grateful to have had the opportunity to bring this historic landmark back to life as The Lofts on Ludington."
Governor Rick Snyder and Gary Heidel, executive director of the Michigan State Housing Development Authority, announced the selection of the historic preservation awards in a recent press release.
"The preservation of historic buildings and archaeological sites is key to maintaining a sense of place in our state," Snyder stated. "This year's recipients understand the power of historic places to attract business and tourists and the difference they make in our communities."
Heidel stated, "The people and organizations we are recognizing this year have invested money, time, talent, and hard work to make their projects a reality and to preserve these important historic places. Each recipient has had a positive impact on Michigan."
During a visit to Escanaba to view the renovations last fall, Heidel said The Lofts on Ludington is the result of "a lot of energy and a lot of passion" from developers and leaders who back the project.
In addition to the assistance of state agencies, the Svilands are thankful for local support, including First Bank, Escanaba City Manager Jim O'Toole, and the community.
"We are proud to provide an urban, upscale environment for people to live and have their businesses, while enjoying the small town charm that Escanaba has to offer," Sviland added.
Three businesses have moved into the new retail space at The Lofts on Ludington. Salon West and Spa owned by Ashley Westlund, Pink Sugar Co. owned by Rachel Miron, and Holly Nicholson-Nylund Photography are located on the first floor.
The Michigan Housing Development Authority and the Michigan State Historic Preservation Office are among state agencies which helped secure grants and tax credits for the local project.
SHPO began the award program in 2003 to recognize outstanding historic preservation achievements that document Michigan's unique past.
Other 2012 award recipients are these rehabilitation projects: Union Building in Calumet; Adams and Masonic Temple Buildings in Sault Ste. Marie; Boyne City Water Works Building; Lansing Artillery National Guard Armory; and Michigan Medical Society Building in East Lansing.
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Jenny Lancour, (906) 786-2021, ext. 143, email@example.com