2019 Award of Merit - Best Adaptive Reuse Project
A once-bustling post office and federal building in downtown Sanford is now a dining destination for a popular local restaurant.
Built in 1937, the building at 226 Carthage Street was home to Sanford’s Post Office until the late 1960s. Later, the building housed a variety of federal employees ranging from the draft board to agricultural agents and more.
The owner of La Dolce Vita Pizzeria, Renee Fincher, purchased the property in 2017. The total budget for building purchase and renovation was over half a million dollars. Through a Department of Commerce Building Reuse Grant, support from the City of Sanford, and federal and state historic tax credit incentives, Renee was able to renovate the “federal building” to a well-loved restaurant in the heart of Sanford’s downtown.
The property owner took a leap of faith to move her already successful business from one location downtown to another. Reusing this vacant building adds character and commerce to Sanford’s unique downtown district and keeps within their updated streetscape vision. The entire downtown has benefitted from this development as the relocated business has become a showpiece in Sanford’s downtown and has increased foot traffic into this corner of the district.
Congratulations to this Small Town Main Street community for its 2019 award.
In the category of ECONOMIC VITALITY, Best Adaptive Reuse Project is awarded to the best adaptive reuse of a building that has outlived its former purpose and has been adapted for a new use that serves current demand.
An Award of Merit is presented to: Renee Fincher, Maurer Architecture, Skip Green and Associates, Inc. and the City of Sanford for La Dolce Vita Pizzeria