New for 2019 – get up to $15,000 for 50% of the cost of renovating your business facade & for adding AODA Approved accessibility features!
The Facade Improvement Program provides up to $15,000 for 50% of the total cost of storefront renovations & beautification. The base grant provides up to $12,500 for the purposes of completing storefront facade upgrades and beautification. For example, a business could get new signage, upgrade the windows and entranceway, install building-front lighting, and restore the heritage brickwork.
New this year, businesses can get an additional add-on to the grant of $2,500 for accessibility upgrades to help make your business entranceway meets AODA Standards. For example, the storefront entranceway could be widened, a permanent ramp could be added, and an automatic door opener could be installed.
The Facade Improvement Program is a great opportunity for property owners & business owners located in the BIA area, as it allows you to improve your property frontage at a fraction of the cost, and helps businesses put their best foot forward in attracting customers!
We expect that funding for this program will be renewed by City-Council in mid-February of 2019.
The eligible improvements include, but are not limited to, brick cleaning, restoration, wheelchair accessibility, doors, signage, windows, lighting and masonry.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?
Improving the appearance of your building’s façade shows that you care about your property. In addition, your neighborhood streetscape is improved. This provides a more welcoming environment to work, shop and live.
HOW TO APPLY?
Funding for this program is given out on a first-come-first basis. Applicants must select 3+ facade improvements that they wish to implement by year-end, as well as any accessibility features that they wish to include in order to get the $2,500 accessibility top-up. Two quotes for each renovation must be provided to the city, which they will use to assess the value of the renovations. Grant funding will be assessed based off of the lowest of the two quotes.
The Following are examples of improvements that the Facade Improvement Program will cover:
- Brick cleaning treatments such as power washing
- Re-pointing of brick masonry
- Exterior painting (not including painting of brick) as part of other façade improvements
- Replacement of doors or windows (on any level on the front facade of the building)
- Replacement or repair of cornice, parapets and other architectural features
- Installation or replacement of awnings or canopies
- Installation and improvement of signage
- Installation or upgrading of exterior lighting features
- Professional redesign of storefront
- Installation of wheelchair ramps and accessible entrances
- Other improvements as agreed to by the Manager at the City BIA Office
The program does not cover the following improvements:
WHO IS ELIGIBLE?
- You must be the property owner or have the permission of the property owner
- Your building must be located in a Business Improvement Area (BIA) that has been in existence for five (5) or more years
- You must not owe outstanding taxes to the City
- You must not start your improvement project before the funding application is approved
- You must have not received the maximum façade improvement funding for your property in previous years.
Applying for the Facade Improvement Program is very simple:
- Collect two quotes for each of the three or more pieces of facade work that you wish to complete through the program.
- Complete and submit the application form as indicated in the application form.
- If approved for funding, you will go into an agreement with The City of Toronto – Economic Development & Culture Division.
- Once the facade improvements are completed and accounted for, the city will provide the grant funding to the successful applicant.
The program is first-come-first-serve starting at the beginning of each calendar year when The City sets its budget. While there is a due date for the program, it is highly recommended that members submit their paperwork as soon as possible, as funding is often 100% allocated by mid-April.
STEP 1 TO 5
- Applicant contacts the City’s BIA Office to determine eligibility
E-mail: [email protected]
- Applicant completes application form
- City reviews the application. Funding review committees are composed of local architects, business owners, historical experts and other community representatives and make recommendations to City Council
- City approves or declines the application
- City issues funding cheques to successful applicants upon completion of the agreed-upon work.
Special thanks to the Danny / Danforth Mosaic BIA for resources and info.