Downtown Business Improvement & Preservation Grant Program

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Overview

The City of New Braunfels and the Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone #3 (Downtown TIRZ Board) offers business and property owners a business and preservation grant to support improvements of buildings in Downtown New Braunfels. These projects include façade and other exterior improvements, residential and commercial conversions, and improvements to public infrastructure. These improvement projects are eligible for grant reimbursement if the work takes place within the Downtown TIRZ boundary.

Eligible improvements  can receive a reimbursement up to 25% of an approved project's cost, based on current funds available. Prior to starting an approved project, applicants must submit a complete application and may be required to meet with the Downtown TIRZ Board  to present their projects. Grant applicants are required to demonstrate how their improvement is compatible with the Downtown Implementation Plan, Downtown Action Plan or Downtown TIRZ Project Plan as well a project summary.

All grants are a reimbursement with funds dispersed after required invoices and receipts are received, and the project is completed and inspected by City staff. Applicants must receive Downtown TIRZ Board approval and City Council approval, sign an award/agreement letter, and receive a Notice to Proceed BEFORE project work commences for which the application is made. If construction begins before the Notice to Proceed is issued, all grant monies are forfeited and the project is ineligible for reimbursement. 

Grant Program Guidelines

The Downtown Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone (TIRZ) Business Improvement & Preservation Grant helps facilitate catalytic redevelopment projects in the downtown area using tax increment investments. Applications are evaluated by the Downtown TIRZ Board and recommendations are made to City Council for final approval. Funding of eligible improvements will be based on a project’s score and available funds. Funding is available to property and business owners through this program for eligible building façade/exterior improvements, preservation, streetscape or right-of-way improvements, and/or health and safety updates. Eligible project reimbursements will receive up to 25% of an approved project's costs.

Strategies

  • Incentivize infill development and occupancy for vacant space and lots
  • Help increase number of Downtown residents
  • Help increase open space in Downtown
  • Help fund enhancement projects (lighting, landscaping, public art) and maintenance on public infrastructure and in public right-of-way
  • Help fund projects to fill in pedestrian amenity “gaps” in Downtown, which may include lighting, street furniture, landscaping, trees, and shading devices
  • Help fund projects to repair broken, incomplete sidewalk network and build new sidewalks where absent

Eligible Types of Improvements for Funding

Façade/Exterior Improvements & Preservation Grant

This grant reimburses applicants for projects to renovate a building’s façade. The maximum grant is up to 25% of the total façade costs of the project. Funds may be used for façade restoration/renovation projects that would require a significant change to the façade of the building, exterior improvements, or historical preservation.

Residential Grant

This grant is designed for the creation of new or renovations/improvements driven by code requirements to residential housing to enhance the value of the building or property. The maximum grant is up to 25% of total costs.

Commercial Conversion Grant

This grant reimburses property owners or businesses for converting and upgrading previously non-commercial properties in the Downtown TIRZ to encourage additional commercial development. The program will provide a grant up to 25% of eligible project costs for qualifying improvements to qualified applicants.

Public Infrastructure and Streetscape Grant

This grant is designed for improvements within the City’s right-of-way driven by code requirements or intended as an aesthetic enhancement. The maximum grant is up to 25% of total costs. Examples of projects include pedestrian and related safety lighting, utility enhancements or replacements, landscaping and tree plantings, and other types of improvements that make a positive visual impact.

Additional Information

  1. TIRZ 3 Boundary Map
  2. TIRZ 3 Grant Program Workflow

Projects eligible for grants must be within the TIRZ 3 boundary

TIRZ 3 Map