On December 2, LPA closed the sale of the Lawrence Turnhalle at 900 Rhode Island to Flint Hills Holding Group LLC., Tony Krsnich principal. This concludes a period of LPA ownership of 26 months in which every one of our objectives was met!
You may recall that last July LPA entered into a contract with Tony which allowed him 60 days to evaluate whether he wanted to proceed with the sale. That period was extended another 60 days. At that time Tony decided he wished to proceed, although his proposed use program is still not finalized. Tony is taking a tremendous leap of faith, as LPA did, and we believe that the entire city needs to get behind him and wish him well with his project at Turnhalle.
Tony is assuming the mortgage LPA signed with previous owner Rod Ernst, and he has reimbursed LPA for mortgage payments made from July until now.
Although no longer an owner, LPA will continue its involvement with the Turnhalle. Both parties signed a Preservation Covenant Running with the Land, which assures us that the rehabilitation will meet the standards set by the U.S. Secretary of the Interior, and that the character defining characteristics of the property, once rehabilitated, will be maintained as such. LPA cannot dictate use, but has the right to object if a particular use is causing harm to the character-defining features. This document grants LPA other rights as well. To underscore the importance of successfully completing the difficult rehab, LPA also provided Tony a second mortgage of $50,000, with payments to begin when he gains an occupancy permit or October 2016, whichever comes first.
LPA gained ownership of the building, cleaned it up, studied it, determined the root causes of deterioration, determined a sequenced major repair program, secured funding, completed the repair program, and found a buyer. Not one board member received one penny for all this work.
LPA will have lost around $10,000 in this venture, but $50,000 was raised. Although we took a risk that could have destroyed the organization, we come out stronger, and Turnhalle has been spared. We have no doubt, having worked with it up close for two years, that Turnhalle would not be savable today if LPA had not stepped in. Many thanks to each and every one of you who donated money, helped with cleanup tasks, and participated in public events. You helped in a very real way to save the Turnhalle.