By Nikki Velarde, The Belton Journal
City Council recently approved a Façade Improvement Grant to be provided to L&R Meats.
The Façade Improvement Grant Program is established to encourage quality exterior rehabilitation in Belton’s historic business district. Any commercial property within Belton’s Downtown Development District is eligible for grant funds.
This program provides supplemental funds for exterior work on storefronts and commercial buildings, as well as commercial residential buildings that are visible to the traveling public in the Downtown Development District.
“I would like to see more awnings go up in the Downtown area,” said Belton City Planning Director Erin Newcomer.
The most recent business in Downtown Belton to begin making façade improvements is L&R Meats at 118 North Penelope Street, starting with an awning.
L&R Meats has been in business for more than 26 years.
“For being in business that long, we’ve got to be doing something right,” said new owner Steve Gray.
For nearly 7 months before he took ownership of the store, he worked there learning the ins and outs and gaining insight on the flow of the store.
“We did run into some problems with customers having trouble finding our store,” Gray said. “Right now we’re just a Plain Jane on this street. We want (the Façade Improvement) to be more of a marketing deal for the building.”
In a short time, however, being a Plain Jane will no longer be the case. With a classic awning and eye catching colors on the store front, L&R Meats will no longer be hiding and blending in.
“It’s pretty exciting how much reinvestment we have in the community, especially in our Downtown area,” said Newcomer. “It’s really made a huge difference. Downtown Belton is really coming alive.”
The City of Belton Façade Improvement Grant Program is established as a single payment reimbursement to property owners per building or business, and in some situations, tenants. Façade grants are available on a 50/50 matching basis with a cap of $10,000 per grant.
Façade Grant funds focus on exterior work that is visible to the traveling public on storefronts, commercial buildings, and commercial residential buildings in the Downtown Development District. Participating businesses receive their single payment reimbursements following the completion of the approved project.
For more information on applying for a façade grant, visit www.beltontexas.gov/index.aspx?nid=326 or call (254) 933-5816.