Westchester finalizing grant to reimburse businesses for storefront upgrades

Published: Monday, Nov. 18, 2013 11:56 a.m. CDT

WESTCHESTER – The village is in the final stages of approving a program that would offer businesses a rebate of up to $7,500 for giving their storefronts a facelift.

The move would be a cheaper alternative to establishing a TIF district, which Village Manager Janet Matthys has said won’t happen until the village receives concrete interest for new developments. 

During a Nov. 12 Village Board meeting, the Economic Development Committee proposed a village-funded grant that would reimburse businesses for up to 50 percent of costs toward facade upgrades, with a maximum rebate of $7,500.

“With aging communities, sometimes you need a little face lift,” Matthys said. “Anything that will improve the aesthetic from the street for these businesses [would qualify for a rebate].”

Upgrades could include a new awning or signage, Matthys said. Business owners would apply for funding with the Community Development Department.

Matthys said all village trustees are in favor of the program and that they asked for more specifics from the committee. The program could be in place by the beginning of next year if approved at either the Nov. 26 or Dec. 10 board meeting, she said. 

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