DSHA Announces Downtown Development Districts Funding Awards

SMYRNA – Building on progress in Delaware’s downtowns, Governor John Carney and the Delaware State Housing Authority (DSHA) announced today that eight new downtown revitalization projects in Milford, Dover and Wilmington will receive $4.6 million in rebate funding through Delaware’s Downtown Development Districts (DDD) program.

Established in May 2014, the DDD program was created to spur private capital investment in commercial business districts and other neighborhoods; stimulate job growth and improve the commercial vitality of our cities and towns; and help build a stable community of long-term residents in our downtowns and other neighborhoods.

Since the first rebate awards in April 2015, the DDD program has been a catalyst for private investment in Delaware’s downtowns. With these new awards, $29.3 million in rebates through the program has leveraged $551 million in private investment in designated downtown districts in all three counties.

“The DDD program has been a central part of our efforts to revitalize Delaware’s downtown business districts and drive private investment in our towns and cities. In just a few years, the DDD program has leveraged significant private investment in a wide variety of projects.” said Governor John Carney. “Encouraging private investment that also revitalizes our downtown business districts and surrounding neighborhoods is the goal of the DDD program, and we’re thrilled that it has been so successful.”

“The DDD program is doing exactly what we intended – attracting significant private investment to our downtowns,” said Anas Ben Addi, Director of the Delaware State Housing Authority. “We’re excited to support new projects that are bringing businesses and jobs downtown, renovating vacant buildings, supporting historic preservation, and creating homes in Delaware’s towns and cities.”

At today’s event, Governor Carney also announced the expansion of the DDD Program and encouraged cities and towns throughout the state to apply to become designated districts. The DDD program is currently available in eight designated districts: Dover, Georgetown, Harrington, Laurel, Milford, Seaford, Smyrna and Wilmington. Existing districts can also apply to have their district expanded, increasing the opportunity within their cities and towns for DDD-funded projects.

Connie Holland, Director of the Office of State Planning Coordination (OSPC) said, “I am thrilled that the Governor has provided the opportunity for more local governments to join the Downtown Development District program. I would urge all local governments to apply for the designation and join this beneficial program.” The application form, program guidelines booklet and other materials are available on the OSPC website. The deadline for submission of completed applications is May 15, 2019.

Eight large DDD projects in Milford, Dover, and Wilmington will be funded with reservation awards announced at today’s event. The event was held at a location previously awarded a DDD large project reservation. In fall of 2016, project investor and local business owner Bob Johnson applied for and was awarded the reservation to construct a new building at 133 N. DuPont Boulevard in Smyrna. The building currently houses Johnson’s computer and electronics business and will soon house Smyrna’s iconic Dairy Sweet Restaurant, set to reopen shortly. “It’s been a great experience being part of the DDD program and receiving the reservation award gave me the opportunity to finish my project earlier than I had thought possible,” said Johnson.

By utilizing a DDD large project reservation award, NCALL plans to combine two properties on Division Street in Dover to construct a three-story office building which will be leased in part to Delaware State University for a new small business incubator. NCALL also plans to move their Restoring Central Dover staff to these offices. Karen Speakman, NCALL’s Executive Director, said, “We’re excited about this opportunity, as this gives us a chance to have more space for our employees so we can continue to make a difference in the Dover community. We are ecstatic at being one of the applicants selected for the DDD Program in this round of funding.”

In Milford, investor and business owner Dan Bond is receiving his third DDD large project reservation award. He plans to renovate the historic Wells Building in Milford. Bond is also currently working on a project to restore the historic Pikus Building and build nine new townhomes in Milford. “I would not have taken on these projects if financial support from the DDD program had not been available. By combining financial support from the DDD program with state and federal historic restoration tax credits, I plan to restore both of these historic buildings to their original glory,” he said.

DDD Rebate Large Project Reservation Award Details


  • NCALL plans to combine two properties, 223 and 225 W. Division Street, to construct a 3-story office building with approximately 7,920 square feet of space. The property is located at the corner of West Division Street and North New Street in Dover. NCALL’s proposed tenant, Delaware State University, plans to open a new small business incubator in this location, NCALL also plans to move their Restoring Central Dover staff to these offices.


  • Downtown Properties of Milford LLC plans to use a DDD large project reservation award to renovate a three-story brick building originally constructed in 1855 at 10 NW Front Street. The building will have two commercial units on the first floor rented to businesses for office or retail use and apartments throughout the rest of the building.


  • 517 Shipley LLC plans to construct a new multifamily development modeled on the success of the nearby Residences at Midtown Park. The project will contain 208 units and include two levels of parking.
  • 519 N. Market LLC plans to redevelop and renovate a beautiful historic building that comprises the northern boundary of “Willington Square” and across the street from the “Old Town Hall” building which was recently renovated by the Delaware Historical Society and is in proximity to several popular restaurants. The redevelopment plan is to renovate the entire building into a hotel, with 33 hotel rooms and a restaurant/hotel lobby and business center on the ground floor.
  • BPG Office Partners VIII LLC plans to renovate some of the upper floors in the Nemours Residential building on North Orange Street to transform the 85 executive suites into apartment units as well as adding an additional 75 apartment units.
  • Ministry of Caring, Inc. plans to repair and renovate 403 N. Washington St., an abandoned and dilapidated residence, and attach it to 401 N. Washington St., the St. Josephine Bakhita House. The project will expand the capacity to house members of the organization’s religious staff.
  • New Compton Towne Associates, LP plans to make significant improvements to the 76 townhouse-style apartments which offer critical, family‐specific affordable housing on the East Side of Wilmington, DE. The goal is to enhance the curb appeal and usability with accessibility improvements.
  • Shipley Partners LLC plans to redevelop 803 Shipley Street as two floors of retail and office space while demolishing two-thirds of 805 Shipley Street and adaptively reusing other portions of the building for a restaurant and bar, with an event space on the second floor and a yoga studio on the third floor. Following the demolition of the easterly portion of the structures at 805 Shipley Street, this site will be combined with the unused portions of the site cleared at 807 Shipley Street and a 4,300 square foot beer garden and food truck court will be constructed to complement the adjacent bar and restaurant.


About Delaware State Housing Authority

The Delaware State Housing Authority (DSHA), formed in 1968, is dedicated to providing quality, affordable housing opportunities and appropriate supportive services to low- and moderate-income Delawareans. In addition to its role as the State’s Housing Finance Agency, DSHA is unique in that it is also serves as a Public Housing Authority and acts as a Community Development and Planning Agency. As a Public Housing Authority, DSHA receives funding from HUD to build, own and operate public housing in Kent and Sussex counties, two of Delaware’s three counties. For more information about the Delaware State Housing Authority, please call (302) 739-4263 or visit DEStateHousing.com.


Media Contact

Jessica Eisenbrey

Director of Public Relations

Delaware State Housing Authority

302.739.0271 (office)

302.632.0470 (cell)



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