There are so many resources available for small businesses in Georgia, but it’s not always easy finding the resources you need to support your ventures. We’ve compiled a list of some of the most helpful business resources, including loans, grants, and foundations that can help you reach your full potential with your downtown venture and investment. The Downtown Development Authority staff will help navigate interested investors through several downtown economic development incentive options.
Downtown Development Revolving Loan Fund
The purpose of the Downtown Development Revolving Loan Fund (DDRLF) is to assist cities, counties, and development authorities in their efforts to revitalize and enhance downtown areas by providing below-market-rate financing to fund capital projects in core historic downtown areas and adjacent historic neighborhoods where DDRLF will spur commercial redevelopment.
Applicants must demonstrate that they have a viable downtown development project and clearly identify the proposed uses of the loan proceeds. Once approved, funds may be used for such activities such as: real estate acquisition, development, redevelopment, and new construction.
The maximum loan is $200,000 per project. Applications will be accepted throughout the year and as loan funds are available to the Department.
Georgia Cities Foundation
The Georgia Cities Foundation assists cities in their efforts to revitalize and enhance downtown areas by serving as a partner and facilitator in funding capital projects through a revolving loan fund. Projects should encourage spin-off development, add jobs, promote downtown housing, or add to the cultural enrichment of the community. Each application must also undergo credit underwriting. Eligible projects include real estate acquisition, building rehabilitation, new construction, green space and parks. Ineligible use of funds are operating expenses and administration, local revolving loan funds, public infrastructure projects, streetscapes, and facade projects.
Applications for the Revolving Loan Fund program may be submitted at any time. The Foundation's staff will review applications to determine if the project fits the overall objectives of the Foundation and is likely to have a positive economic impact on the community.
The Downtown Development Authority offers offers a 50/50 match program up to $5,000 in matching funds for improvement of the facade of your building. Each recipient that is approved will receive compensation for 50% of the cost for eligible enhancements, up to a maximum of $5,000 per project. Monies available are for exterior improvements only, and facade grants apply to those structures within the Downtown Development Authority boundaries.