Facade Grant FAQs

Downtown Columbia Commercial Historic District

Commercial Facade Improvement Program

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do I submit my Application?
    • The Application along with the required documents are due to Austin Brass either via email abrass@columbiatn.com or put in a manila envelope and delivered to Development Services at Columbia City Hall by June 19, 2020 at 4:30 p.m.
  • I own more than one building downtown. How do I apply for more than one property?
    • If you own more than one building downtown you must submit a separate application for each building separately. If it is a building that has multiple businesses but shares the same facade you can submit one application for that building.
  • If I am currently negotiating the purchase or lease of a property, should I apply?
    • If you are currently leading a property you are considered eligible to apply if you have a letter from the building owner. If you are negotiating a purchase/lease and are not currently occupying the property, you are not eligible to apply at this time.
  • What is the funding source for the grant?
    • The Facade Improvement Grant are financed through state funding through the Rural Economic Opportunity Act passed by General Assembly.
  • Is there a minimum grant amount awarded?
    • No, there is no minimum amount for a Grant request. There is a max request of $5,000 or $10,000. However, the minimum requirement of (3) bids still apply in all cases.
  • What area is eligible for the Grant?
    • Buildings must be located within the Downtown Columbia Commercial Historic District in the map provided on page 3 of the application. Tenants are eligible for grand funds by including a letter of approval for proposed improvements from building owner with the application.
  • Can an applicant submit a project that has already been completed or is in progress?
    • No, any project that is completed and/or is in the process of being completed is ineligible. The project must be approved by the selection committee and Columbia Historic Zoning Commission. Once you have been notified and attended the Pre-Construction Meeting you may begin your project.
  • What is eligible for improvements for the Facade Grant?
    • Repainting of a facade if already painted, awnings (new or replaced), removal of vinyl or aluminum siding, brick repairs (tuck-pointing mortar), windows & doors (within the historic design guidelines), safety improvements, sign & exterior lighting on the building, and improving visible back and side entrances.
  • What is not eligible for improvements for the Facade Grant?
    • No roof repairs, no sidewalks or parking spaces, no interior improvements, and no murals.
  • Does the improvements need to be done by a licensed contractor?
    • Yes.

No roof repairs, no sidewalks or parking spaces, no interior improvements, and no murals.