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Monday, March 20, 2017

Downtown Improvement Grants

Orillia | by Ken Hashizume  

The City of Orillia handed out a total of $60,000 to five downtown businesses.


Five Orillia businesses are the beneficiaries of the first ever Downtown Tomorrow Community Improvement Plan grant program.
 
The five recipients are: Orillia Brewing Company ($24,050), former Marvel Beauty School building ($20,570), Enertest Corporation ($9,600), Impression House ($4,245), and Crossroads Staffing ($601).
 
All five joined Mayor Steve Clarke in a presentation on Monday at the City's Economic Development Office inside Orillia City Hall.
 
Manager of Real Estate and Commercial Development Laura Thompson says the grants total $60,000 and cover things like facade and signage improvements.
 
She says it also covers retrofits of underutilized buildings.
 
Thompson says the grants enable businesses to assist development much faster and the cash flow.
 
She says some smaller projects needed the grants to make these improvements as it could make or break the business.
 
Thompson says the purpose of the grants is to get vacant storefronts be utilized and more people working and living in downtown Orillia.
 
She says they have been getting calls from those who are interested in setting up a business in the downtown since the City started offering the grants.
 
There will be two more intakes this year, one in May and the other in November.



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