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Fargo couple remodeling former Leef Cleeners into single-family home get tax breaks

FARGO - A Fargo couple will get a tax holiday as part of their plans to turn a former downtown Fargo laundry into their home. Keith and Rondi McGovern went before the city's Renaissance Zone Authority on Monday asking for Renaissance Zone status ...

Leef Cleaners building
The former Leef Cleaners building, seen Monday in Fargo, will be turned into a single-family home. Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor
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FARGO - A Fargo couple will get a tax holiday as part of their plans to turn a former downtown Fargo laundry into their home.

Keith and Rondi McGovern went before the city's Renaissance Zone Authority on Monday asking for Renaissance Zone status for the $1.75 million project.

The authority gave the project its blessing and later the Fargo City Commission approved the request as well, setting up $130,000 in tax breaks, with about $80,000 from a five-year property tax exemption and about $50,000 in the form of an income-tax credit.

Renaissance Zone Authority members expressed enthusiasm for the plans involving the former Leef Cleaners building at 1002 1st Ave. S., stating the improvements will enhance a main gateway to downtown.

"I think it's extremely exciting," said Kris Sheridan, a member of the zone authority.

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"It certainly is unique. A good project all around," said Bob Stein, senior planner for the city.

The McGoverns plan to put a new roof on the building and restore the entrance of the building to its original appearance.

Keith McGovern said Monday that they have been sandblasting layers of paint from interior surfaces to expose original materials.

"It's beautiful under there," he said.

The zone authority and City Commission also granted Renaissance Zone status for a rehabilitation project at 23 Broadway, a building owned by 23 Broadway LLP.

The plan is to gut and remodel the top three floors into 18 one-bedroom apartments and several three-bedroom apartments, organizers said Monday.

It is anticipated the one-bedroom units would rent for about $650 a month while the three-bedroom units would rent for about $1,000 a month.

The project will receive a five-year property tax abatement valued at $70,805.

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Readers can reach Forum reporter Dave Olson at (701) 241-5555

I'm a reporter and a photographer and sometimes I create videos to go with my stories.

I graduated from Minnesota State University Moorhead and in my time with The Forum I have covered a number of beats, from cops and courts to business and education.

I've also written about UFOs, ghosts, dinosaur bones and the planet Pluto.

You may reach me by phone at 701-241-5555, or by email at dolson@forumcomm.com
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