Downtown Facade Improvement Program Yields a Significant Return on Investment

Downtown Moncton on a snowy day. Image: Inda Intiar/Huddle

MONCTON- Downtown Moncton Centre-ville (DMCI) is accepting applications for its $30,000 program to improve and restore the façades of commercial buildings in the Business Improvement Area.

The organization has seen a significant return on investment over the years.

“This has been really successful. It’s brought in more than six times the amount…we put in $180,000 over the past six years and it’s generated over $1.1 million [in improvements],” said Anne Basque, executive director of DMCI.

DMCI’s members, which include property owners and businesses in the area spanning Vaughan Harvey Boulevard to King Street and St. George Street, pay $0.16 per $100 assessment that helps cover the cost of programs like this.

“They provide the levy for us to operate and this is our way of giving back to the members that pay into the levy,” Basque said.

Improvement grants are provided on a first-come, first-served basis until the allocated budget is spent. Successful applicants have up to 50 per cent of the costs of improvements (excluding HST) covered for a maximum of $3,000 per façade. Each applicant can improve no more than two façades with the grant.

“It helps rejuvenate some businesses if you like, because they can take advantage of it for their façade,” Basque said. “So you have renovations of buildings, you have restorations. You can also [access the funds], in the summer, when you do your landscaping. There’s also the security aspect if you’re doing lighting, so it has a lot of benefits for the business owners.”

Denis Durepos, whose business Broadway Place helped developed The Arches on St. George Street, said the program helps renew buildings.

“It brings the old back to life,” he said.