A Summary of
Communities, towns, cities and organizations around the state have inventoried many of their assets including mansions, stores, civil war sites, archaeological sites, landmarks, or other fragments of history. While providing many communities with a sense of identity and place, historic preservation also contributes to West Virginia's economy.
Preservation Alliance of West Virginia and Main Street West Virginia have joined together in this study to provide estimates of the economic impacts of historic preservation programs in West Virginia. Preservation Alliance retained the West Virginia University Bureau of Business and Economic Research to conduct the study.
This study quantifies the direct and indirect economic impacts associated with historic preservation capital expenditures and heritage tourism. The study examined the impact of several programs including: Main Street, tax credits, preservation grants, and ISTEA on the West Virginia economy. Non-residential construction projects were analyzed for the calendar year 1996. Construction expenditures were then placed into the IMPLAN input-output modeling system developed by WVU and a total impact was calculated based upon multipliers for each input sector.
The Main Street West Virginia program in the West Virginia Development Office targets the revitalization of central business districts. In 1996, nine of the 17 active Main Street communities total economic impact resulted in 192 jobs created, $10 million worth of construction projects which fueled an additional $8 million in business volume; all leveraging more than $300,000 worth of assorted state taxes.
The West Virginia Division of Culture and History, Historic Preservation Office promotes historic preservation with the Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program and the Preservation Grant Program. Both of these programs, along with the ISTEA Program, have spurred nearly $6 million worth of construction and another $4.6 million in business volume, and created 112 job opportunities resulting in nearly $3 million worth of employee compensation provided by these construction projects.
In addition to construction estimates, the study also analyzed the results of heritage tourism in West Virginia. This type of tourism focuses on the development, promotion and visitation of tourism sites that are historic in nature. Heritage tourist expenditures created 390 jobs in businesses directly serving the tourists and another 130 jobs indirectly for a total employment impact of 520. These 520 employees earned $8.2 million in compensation. Business did $15.4 million worth of sales with the tourists, and including the indirect and induced impacts, heritage tourism created an additional $46.7 million in business volume.
Nearly $1 million worth of state taxes have been realized
through historic preservation. These taxes include increases in consumer sales
tax, personal income tax, corporate net income, and business franchise tax.
Main Street West Virginia is a downtown revitalization program based on historic preservation. Data collected from the Main Street West Virginia office included statistics from 9 out of the 17 active Main Street communities within the state. Communities included in the study are: Beckley, Bluefield, Fairmont, Huntington, Kingwood, Morgantown, New Martinsville, Point Pleasant, and Weirton. The following list includes the value of construction and improvements using data consisting of total investment minus buildings sold. Included in this figure are facades, rehabilitation, new construction, and, public improvements. The total value of construction is estimated at just over $10 million. The following chart graphs the impact of the Main Street program statewide.
The table below is a cumulative summary of the W.Va. Historic Preservation Tax Credit Projects, Preservation Grant Projects and the ISTEA Program. The historic preservation tax credit program offers a 20 percent federal, and 10 percent state tax credit (not a deduction) to eligible owners. Owners of depreciable buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places or eligible to be listed, individually or in a district, qualify for the tax credit ? if the work meets the Secretary of the Interior's standards for rehabilitation. The preservation grant projects encompass construction grants issued by the state Historic Preservation Office. These grants are in the form of matching grants for construction projects involving buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The ISTEA Grants Program supports many types of projects, including historic preservation projects as well as rehabilitation and operation of historic transportation buildings and facilities. The total value of construction projects for 1996 for these three programs is $5.8 million. The following chart graphs the impact of these programs statewide.
OTHER IMPACTS ASSOCIATED WITH HISTORIC
While enhancements to historic structures and heritage
tourism are important contributions to local and regional 'economies, there are
a number of other tangible benefits which accrue from historic preservation.
Billy Joe Peyton
Preservation Alliance of West Virginia is a statewide nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation and promotion of West Virginia's historic and cultural resources. We would like to acknowledge the following organizations for their assistance with this project:
Other Cooperating Partners:
To receive a full copy of this report , please contact:
PO Box 3371 Charleston, WV 25333 (304) 345-6005