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Façade Improvement Grant program gives small business makeovers in Virginia Beach

Virginia Beach small business owners can now apply for a grant to improve the exterior of their storefronts.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Virginia Beach small business owners can now apply to get thousands of dollars to give their properties a facelift. A special grant program is back for another year.

Weatherworn storefronts can get a clean look through the Virginia Beach Façade Improvement Grants Program (FIG). 

Mallorie Terranova owns Jars of Dust and said her handcrafted pottery business is taking shape and expanding because of the thousands of dollars she got from the grant program last year.

“We used the Virginia Beach grant to paint the exterior of our building, seal it from the elements and replace all the windows," she said.

Emily Archer, the city’s Economic Development Project Coordinator, said any business owner with fewer than 50 employees who is current on taxes and is located on any commercially or industrially zoned property can apply for the grants.

“It's a small matching grant program for small businesses. We’ll match 50/50 their exterior improvements up to $10,000," said Archer. 

Terranova hopes other small business owners apply and benefit from the Facade Improvement Grants.

“The fact that we were able to expand our production space into this warehouse has given us the ability to scale the entire business significantly," said Terranova.

Ten small business owners have already applied for this year’s funding.

Virginia Beach officials say since they started the program two years, ago they have provided funds for 29 small business owners.

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