Leaky roof? Weathered windows? Crumbling brick? If you're a downtown business, the city of Waukee wants to give you a face lift.
In March, the Waukee City Council initiated the Downtown Facade Improvement program, a $30,000 grant program for businesses in Waukee's downtown business district meant to improve and repair their exteriors.
The Pin Oak Gallery on the downtown Triangle was the first to receive a grant as part of the program. At a June 18 council meeting, Cherl Laird-Humphrey, owner of the Pin Oak Gallery, was awarded $4,438 toward the cost of repairing the business' roof.
The overall objectives of the Downtown Facade Improvement Program, according to the city's website, are as follows:
1. Provide matching grants as incentives to facilitate facade improvements.
2. Promote facade design that is consistent with the objectives identified in the Downtown Design Guidelines.
3. Ensure that facade designs are sensitive to pedestrian movement, and that the designs contribute and improve the aesthetics of the area.
4. Provide input and advice to help businesses, organizations, and property owners develop design standards that maintain the design integrity of the districts established in the Downtown Design Guidelines.
5. Coordinate the Facade Improvement Program with other economic and business development programs to maximize the impact of improvement efforts.
6. Convene a review committee to review proposed facade designs to ensure consistency with design criteria.
Under the terms of the program, a maximum amount of $7,500 could be awarded to a qualifying business. Businesses can apply for up to 50 percent of the total project cost.