‘Great Streets’ Loan Program to Improve Anchorage Building Façades
The old Cyrano’s Theatre on 4th Avenue in Downtown Anchorage is slated for redevelopment.
To make Anchorage more welcoming for residents and visitors, the Great Streets Façade Improvement Loan Program is offering financial assistance to spruce up the appearance of buildings.
Improving Store Fronts
The Anchorage Community Development Authority (ACDA) is teaming up with UAA to facilitate the program, aimed at business and property owners in Muldoon and Downtown Anchorage
“Our objective is really to inspire enhancement and restoration of the physical condition and appearance of storefronts and properties in the city,” says Mike Robbins, executive director ACDA.
Improving store fronts was the top-ranked recommendation of the Project Anchorage Task Force, a panel formed by Mayor Dave Bronson in response to a consultant’s evaluation of the city as a place to live, work, and play.
The Great Streets Façade Improvement Loan Program provides low-interest loans to improve the appearance of building facades and stimulate private investment. A business owner can borrow up to $25,000 per unit at 5 percent interest and has up to 60 months (or five years) of low monthly payments. Business and building owners can combine funding to perform intended façade improvements. Program participants will receive 75 percent of the loan up front, and the remaining 25 percent is paid when the project is complete.
“The Façade Program is part of Mayor Bronson’s urban and community enhancement agenda,” says Melinda Gant, ACDA’s external affairs director. “Eligible improvements within the loan include exterior painting, re-siding, professional cleaning, and restoration of exterior finishes and materials. Repair or replacement of windows and doors and installation and even repair of exterior signage and lighting are part of the loan package.”
Applicants submit their applications to ACDA, and once the Façade Program manager gives pre-approval, program participants complete a trade reference check form and credit application.
“ACDA and UAA’s Small Business Development Center are very pleased to offer this loan program to business and property owners in Muldoon and Downtown Anchorage,” says Robbins. “From urban design and enhancement to disability-accessible upgrades, our communities and neighborhoods will become safer and more attractive for residents, consumers, tourists, and property owners, which ultimately is of great benefit for the entire municipality.”