Downtown property owners, who are contemplating renovation of the front facade of their buildings, will receive an added boost this construction season from the Downtown Development Authority.
“With the cost of materials increasing, the DDA and City felt it was only appropriate to also increase the amount of our incentive,” said Vickie Phillipson, DDA program director.
“Administered on a matching-funds basis, building owners are eligible to now receive an incentive of up to $4,000 per storefront, which is an increase of $2,000,” Phillipson said. "Twin or double storefronts are eligible to receive up to $8,000 in matching funds."
Program guidelines encourage property owners to renovate the exterior of their building as close as possible to what the structure looked like when it was built. Turn-of-the-century storefronts are to represent a full renovation, including removal of non-conforming materials.
The facade program, which was initiated by the DDA during the late-1980s, is credited with having led to the removal of much of the old Kawneer metal storefronts and awnings.
"As people continue to invest in the central business district, it is exciting to see new life pumped into these properties, which benefits the entire downtown," Phillipson said.
With Phillipson retiring this month, property owners who would like to make application to the Facade Incentive Program may now call City Manager Kevin Anderson at 782-2195.