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The purpose of the Commercial Façade Building Materials Grant Program is to enhance and revitalize the aesthetics of Green Bay’s commercial districts by providing a financial incentive for businesses to invest in their property. The Program aims to address deteriorating property conditions and encourage enhancements to the property as viewed from the public right of way as a means to generate economic development for Green Bay’s business districts. The amount of grant dollars awarded are determined on a case-by-case basis, depending on the amount of funds available and the project's overall impact.
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Eligible applicants of the Commercial Façade Grant Program include commercial property owners and business owners leasing space in a commercial property that contributes property tax or Payment In Lieu of Taxes (PILOT). A business owner who is leasing space must have a current lease and written approval from the property owner to participate in the Program. Applicants, property owners, and any business directly benefiting from the project cannot be delinquent on any current City charges, taxes, or assessments, or have defaulted on any previous City assistance. Please read the program's policies and procedures handbook for more information on eligibility.
The Commercial Façade Grant Program may reimburse costs for eligible projects that restore or enhance the facades of commercial properties. The minimum project cost is $15,000. Proposed building materials shall be especially durable, be of higher quality, and compliment the aesthetics of the surrounding neighborhood or district.
Eligible improvements include:
• Commercial windows and doors that allow for visibility both into the building and out to the street
• Restoration or preservation of historical or architecturally significant features
• Restoration of masonry, brick, wood, or glass
• New siding and masonry/brick
• Storefront redesign
• Murals or permanent art fixtures
• Exterior lighting
• Unique, high-quality signs (must be a minor component of a larger overall façade enhancement project)
• Patio features such as fencing, wall lighting, canopies, and pavers
• Design fees for hired architect (project must be implemented)
• Green façade treatment that is permanent and fixed to the building
Ineligible projects include roof improvements that are not “part of the façade” (i.e. do not face the public way; the portion of mansard roofs, for example, facing street frontage are eligible), parking lots, landscaping, non-permanent fixtures, security systems, personal property, interior window coverings, equipment, business advertisement, any improvements not visible from the public right-of-way or public vantage point (with the exception of patios), and any improvements deemed to be inconsistent with adopted City Plans or Policies. Materials shall not diminish the integrity of buildings or districts eligible for Local, State or National Register of Historic Places. Potential applicants should consult with City staff before applying to confirm project eligibility.
All projects must be reviewed and receive approval by the Design Review Team and the Redevelopment Authority prior to allocation of any funds. Proposed building materials shall be especially durable, be of higher quality, and compliment the aesthetics of the surrounding neighborhood or district. Materials shall not diminish the integrity of buildings or districts eligible for Local, State or National Register of Historic Places. Please consult with City staff to determine your building's eligibility status for historic listing.
All properties being considered for the Commercial Façade Grant Program must have an environmental review conducted by City staff to ensure that the proposed project does not negatively impact the surrounding environment and that the property site itself is safe for development. Every project must follow the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA). Flood insurance must be maintained in perpetuity for properties located within the 100-year floodplain.
Projects may not begin until after a grant agreement is executed between the City and the project participant. No work/improvements conducted prior to the execution of the agreement (including materials ordered, preparation work, etc.) will be eligible for reimbursement. Projects must begin within 3 months of the grant award and be completed within 18 months after the project start date, subject to the grant agreement. Longer timelines may be considered depending on the size and scope of the proposed project. Requests to extend an approved timeline must be requested in writing to City staff. The request must include a revised timeline and explanation for delays. Please read the program's policies and procedures handbook for more information on program requirements.
The application process is as follows:
Contact the Community & Economic Development Department for more information:100 N Jefferson StreetRoom 608Green Bay, WI 54301Phone: 920 448 3400