WORTHINGTON – The City of Worthington is rolling out new loan programs to assist in economic development. During an EDA meeting this week, Deputy Administrator Jason Brisson spoke of a Two-Percent Loan program aimed at encouraging rehabilitation of commercial properties in Worthington and another program being proposed – a Façade Matching Grant program that would incentivize business owners to improve the exterior street-facing features of their commercial property.
The façade program is still being developed, but Brisson said the program would provide matching grants for eligible businesses, with a little extra weight toward downtown corridor entities.
The program will provide a higher level of support for downtown businesses but will be available to any commercially zoned property in the City of Worthington. Downtown businesses will be eligible for a matching grant of up to $10,000 at a 1:1 match. All other commercial businesses will be eligible for up to $5,000 at a 2:1 match.
The EDA board approved seeding the program with $100,000 from the revolving loan fund, and Brisson said if the funds are used in the first year, they could be replenished each year by levying $100,000.
Brisson also announced a first applicant for the Two-Percent Loan program, which is from a proposed business called Stem and Seeds Floral Shop and Boutique that would be located at the former dance studio in downtown Worthington.