August 19, 2019
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Central Maine Growth Council launches grant program for downtown Waterville businesses

Community Author: Garvan D. Donegan
Post Date:
Elaine Theriault-Currier | BDN
Elaine Theriault-Currier | BDN

WATERVILLE — Central Maine Growth Council is pleased to announce the establishment of a grant program to assist in the restoration, renovation, redevelopment, and repair of commercial buildings in Waterville’s downtown district. The Facade & Building Improvement Grant will assist property owners and commercial tenants in making capital improvements to building facades, and aims to encourage new and existing property owners and businesses to invest in their commercial storefronts, awnings, and signs, while restoring the original character of historic buildings and providing a catalyst for others to improve the visual appearance of their privately owned buildings.

Building facade improvements can include, but are not limited to: lighting, signage, awnings; restoration of doors, windows, storefront or facade rehabilitation; painting; and accessibility improvements. The program eligible boundaries include commercial properties within the core downtown district, defined as along Front Street, Main Street, Temple Street, Appleton Street, the Concourse, and the Northern terminus of Water Street.

“This Facade and Building Improvement Grant Program will help our local downtown businesses and retailers in a very tangible way and help propel new businesses to enter the district,” said Garvan D. Donegan, director of planning and economic development at Central Maine Growth Council. “The improvements funded through this program will make existing businesses increasingly inviting places to shop, work, and recreate, while revitalizing streetscapes and commercial corridors in the downtown.”

The program, which is supported by Colby College and the Bill and Joan Alfond Foundation, will provide $60,000 in funding, and CMGC is now accepting applications. The grants will be made available to applicants on a competitive selection basis and projects are expected to begin in the Spring 2019 construction season. The Facade & Building Improvement Grant Program is a reimbursement program with a 1:1 matching requirement, which includes three (3) distinct grant opportunities: (i.) Small Projects Grant (up to $2,000.00), (ii.) Façade Improvement Grant (up to $10,000.00), and (iii.) Building Improvement & Special Projects Grant (amount determined on a case-by-case basis).

For additional information on the Facade & Building Improvement Program, please contact Central Maine Growth Council at 207-680-7300, by email at, or visit the downtown section of the CMGC’s website at

Central Maine Growth Council:

CMGC is the leading public/private catalyst and resource for economic development in Central Maine. The growth council is dedicated to fostering a robust regional economy through successful collaborative partnerships among businesses, governments, academic institutions, health care facilities, arts and cultural agencies, and residents primarily in the communities of Waterville, Winslow, Fairfield, and Oakland. The benefit is a highly desirable place in which to enjoy an outstanding work-life balance.