By Kristi Reed
Several merchants will soon have improved store fronts thanks to the City of Winder and the Downtown Development Authority (DDA).
The DDA is administering a $25,000 grant program which will provide area merchants with funds to improve the exterior of buildings in the downtown area.
The façade rehabilitation program will provide up to $3,000 per business for storefront improvements including new signs, repairs, painting, brick cleaning and other projects.
DDA Chairman Mike Rice said several merchants have expressed an interest in the program.
Merchants interested in applying for a grant must complete a program application form which is available at the City Hall annex building or on the City of Winder’s website, www.cityofwinder.com. The applicant must provide a description of the proposed improvements and an estimate of the cost.
Once the completed form is submitted, the façade rehabilitation program committee will review the application and award grants to eligible recipients. Grants are available on a first come, first served basis.
The DDA will hold an informational meeting about the program for interested merchants and commercial property owners on November 13 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Winder Community Center.
In other business, DDA Director Sherri Miller announced another project designed to encourage shoppers to visit downtown Winder.
This holiday season, merchants will have the opportunity to participate in the DDA’s shopping spree contest.
The week before Thanksgiving, the DDA will deliver registration boxes to participating merchants. Store visitors will be able to register to win prizes including $500, $250, $100 and $50 shopping sprees at the store in which they registered. The drawings will be held in January.
The shopping spree contest is only part of the DDA’s plans for the holidays. On December 6, the DDA is sponsoring several activities in conjunction with the annual Holiday parade.
Miller said she is currently contacting churches and schools to line up additional participants for the day’s festivities.
Additionally, the Barrow County Museum will re-open its doors the same day.
“We want this to be a great day in downtown Winder,” Miller said.
What a waste of my city taxes. The City of Winder claims no city taxes yet my fire tax collected by the county and then tranfered to the city and my water bill keep going up. Then the city decides to give money to downtown businesses (private industries)to improve their appearance what going on i work hard all year and pay taxes why these businesses fix their own problems without my tax money.