Ardmore business owners in downtown who are looking to match the area’s historic feel can apply for grant money to help them do so.
The City of Ardmore will offer the facade grant for the second year starting July 1. The grant will reimburse 50 percent of renovation costs up to $5,000. City Planner Stephanie Keyser said the city has $25,000 in facade grant money this year.
“Once they’re approved, they have six months to complete it and get reimbursed for it,” Keyser said.
Applicants will need to get a certificate of appropriateness from the Historic Preservation Board before they’re eligible for the grant. They will also need a letter from an engineer certifying that the building is structurally sound. Keyser said the process can take some time.
“They’ll need to include it in their application,” Keyser said. “This year we decided to do it on a rolling basis because I think it was a little bit stressful last year. They were scrambling.”
The grant covers the cost of exterior improvements to a building, not including signage. Windows, doors, paint and lighting would all be acceptable uses of the grant money.
“For example, last year we had one complete facade renovation, they tore the whole thing down,” Keyser said. “Then we had people who just redid their windows. It’s for anyone.”
Last year, five buildings were renovated with the funds. Development Services Director Jessica Scott said money for the grant comes from Ardmore’s general fund.
“We’re really trying to grow downtown,” Scott said. “The Streetscape is one of our incentives and this is another.”
Anyone interested in applying should contact Keyser at the Department of Development Services.
“It’s first come, first serve,” Keyser said. “We’re doing it through December, but if we get a whole bunch of people through July and August and we hit $25,000, that’s it.”