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Auction Off For Hartford Building

Office Supply Site Has Taxes Paid

Gosselin, Kenneth R

September 21, 2013

The owners of the former Hartford Office Supply Co. building in Hartford's Frog Hollow late Thursday averted a foreclosure auction, less than two days before the bidding was to begin, court documents show.

New York-based Paradigm Capital Group paid nearly $300,000 in property taxes and other fees on a lien that had been purchased from the city by Plymouth Park Tax Services, the documents show. Plymouth Park, also known as XSpand and owned by JPMorgan Chase, first moved to foreclose on Paradigm in March 2012.

The building, at 390 Capitol Ave., is being targeted for conversion into apartments of affordable housing. Dakota Partners Inc., based in Waltham, Mass., has an agreement to buy the building with plans to create 112 units.

Paradigm declined to comment Friday. Dakota did not return a call seeking comment.

The brick-and-brownstone building is considered key to revitalizing a main thoroughfare in the Frog Hollow neighborhood. The foreclosure auction, already delayed once, had been set for Saturday.

Earlier this week, Dakota Principal Roberto Arista said the purchase agreement was still in effect, but he declined to disclose the price. Arista said the project was not granted funding in the latest round of the state's CHAMP program. Dakota plans to re-apply, Arista said.

CHAMP is a new state initiative by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy's administration to promote affordable housing through historic and low-income tax credits and tax-exempt financing through the Connecticut Housing Finance Authority.

Although "low income" is mentioned, Dakota has characterized the apartments as "workforce housing." It would not be targeted for Section 8 housing subsidies, Dakota has said.

In a court filing earlier this year, Paradigm also said it was negotiating with the state of Connecticut about a possible purchase. The state occupies buildings to the west on Capitol Avenue and recently purchased the nearby office tower at 55 Farmington Avenue.

A spokesman for the state Department of Administrative Services had no comment Friday afternoon.

Reprinted with permission of the Hartford Courant. To view other stories on this topic, search the Hartford Courant Archives at http://www.courant.com/archives.
| Last update: September 25, 2012 |
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