Processing Your Payment

Please do not leave this page until complete. This can take a few moments.

October 27, 2023

East Hartford selects developer for troubled Church Corners project

CoStar 860 Main St., East Hartford.

East Hartford has selected Parker Benjamin Inc. as its preferred developer for the Church Corners Inn historic redevelopment project.

Town officials and members of the development team are working on drafting an agreement that would transfer ownership of the building at 860 Main St., to Parker Benjamin for an undetermined cost. 

The Unionville-based firm would own, renovate and then operate the 24-unit apartment building with retail on the main floor. The apartments would be market rate with about 20% deemed affordable, according to the proposal.

The project is estimated to cost about $4.4 million, with Parker Benjamin using historic tax credits to get roughly 45% of the cost back.

East Hartford Mayor Mike Walsh said Parker Benjamin stood out as the only developer that would save the 1913 structure, which is actually two buildings joined by a front facade.

The town used a state grant to buy the property, relocate residents and conduct some pre-development work in an effort to expedite a complete overhaul of the troubled building.

In the past five years, town police have answered 2,500 calls at the site, ranging from simple trespass to shooting deaths, and roughly 500 fire emergency calls, Walsh said.

Church Corners was a “destabilizing presence on Main Street,” and Walsh said town officials are eager to see it become a new centerpiece for the downtown area. 

Walsh said part of Parker Benjamin’s appeal is that it came to the table with their own funding.

He hopes to have a development agreement to the Town Council by the end of the year.  

Parker Benjamin’s development director Dimitri Karouta said once the firm takes ownership of the building, it will seek historic designation, which is one of the first steps toward gaining the historic tax credits for the project.

The firm’s portfolio is strictly historic preservation work, with 21 projects primarily in Connecticut underway.

Sign up for Enews


Order a PDF