Facade Program

The Facade Program assists businesses and owners improve the appearance of their buildings.

What is the Facade Program?

The Facade and District Improvement programs offers grants for small businesses and commercial districts located in eligible City neighborhoods. Eligible applicants may request forgivable loans up to $20,000 for facade work, depending on the project's scope, private investment and commercial area eligibility. Secured forgivable loans of greater amounts are considered on a case-by-case basis.

Apply online or contact a Commercial District Manager in your area to learn more about this program and other opportunities.

See open facade projects at SLDCFacade.org.

Objective

Improve, stabilize and revitalize predominantly residential, low and moderate income communities by:

  • Supporting the local businesses that create jobs and provide vital goods and services that strengthen the surrounding community.
  • Enhancing the appearance and historical character of individual buildings in commercial districts.

Funds may be applied to individual buildings and businesses, or to commercial district improvements such as trash cans, signage, monuments, and other enhancements. 

Eligible:

Buildings

    • Existing, commercially zoned located in the City of St. Louis' predominantly residential and low to moderate income neighborhoods.
    • Project site must pass a preliminary environmental review. 

Businesses

    • Existing business or non-profit corporation OR if a business is planned for the site, a term lease must be provided.
    • Current on all applicable City licenses, fees and taxes.

Improvements

All proposed improvements must be clearly visible from a street elevation of the property (exemptions for parking lot improvements and ADA enhancements) and follow Façade Committee historic design guidelines.
    • Building Improvements may include, but are not limited to: awnings, entrance doors, windows, painting, signage, exterior lighting, storefront renovations, building cleaning to enhance the historic nature of the building, tuckpointing / masonry work undertaken in conjunction with a scope of work resulting in the substantial visible improvement and/or renovation of the building façade, fencing, patio dining enhancements and parking lot improvements.
    • District Improvements may include, but are not limited to: trash cans, signage, monuments, bike racks, streetscape furniture and other enhancements.

Application

The Facade Program works to provide assistance to as many small businesses as possible. Business or commercial district proposals that do not fit the Facade Program requirements, may receive assistance from a variety of SLDC, local, state and federal programs designed to strengthen low-moderate income communities and encourage business development. Contact a Commercial District Manager in your area to learn more about this program and other opportunities.

The funding of the Facade Program is financed wholly through a grant from the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Community Development Administration under the provision of Title I of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974 (Pub L, 93-383 42 USC 5301 et seq.).

Related Resources

Business Associations and Community Partners
Business Events
Facade Program Online Application
Neighborhood Commercial District Improvement Program
Staff: Neighborhood Business Development

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