The Louisiana Cultural Districts Program was created by Act 298 of the 2007 Regular Session of the legislature. The Cultural District program is a valuable tool for economic growth in the revitalization of Louisiana communities. The primary goal of the Louisiana Cultural Districts Program is to incite community revitalization based on cultural activity through tax incentives, technical assistance, and resources.
There are two tax incentives that come with cultural district certification. One is the state historic tax credit, which extends eligibility to property owners of commercial buildings to apply for state historic tax credits for renovation projects to historic buildings. The other is that original, one-of-a-kind works of visual art sold within the boundaries of a Cultural District are exempt from local tax. These incentives are useful tools to encourage preservation and reuse of buildings.
South Riverfront Cultural District
The South Riverfront Cultural District is West Monroe’s newest cultural district. It begins on Coleman Avenue and extends to Lazarre Park. Cultural amenities found within this district include the West Monroe Community Center, Gator Park, Lazarre Park, and the Riverbend Community Health Park.
West Monroe Cultural District
The West Monroe Cultural District received approval to extend its boundary from Downtown West Monroe to the neighborhoods between the northern end of Trenton Street and Cypress Street. Cultural amenities found in this district include the Ouachita River, Ouachita River levee, the Key-Mize House, and Trenton Street.
Benefits of Having a Louisiana Cultural District in a Community
- Allows a local government to designate a Cultural District for the purpose of revitalizing a community by creating a hub of cultural activity
- Allows income and corporate franchise tax credits for eligible expenses for rehabilitation of revenue generating historic structures in a Cultural District
- Provides an exemption from local sales and use taxes for proceeds received from the sale of original, one-of-a-kind works of art from locations established within the Cultural District