The city of Peoria is hoping to revitalize and preserve its Old Town through a new program for commercial property owners.
Dina Green, Peoria’s economic development project manager, told Dealmaker the Commercial Revitalization Program intends to improve Old Town through exterior revitalization of properties including parking lot improvements, parking areas and pedestrian walkways along Grand and 83rd avenues.
Goals are to reinvigorate private investment in these properties, eliminate slum and blight, improve the aesthetics of the area, and enhance the overall quality of life for Peoria residents, Green said.
“The highest purpose of the program is to revitalize and bring new investment to the area,” she said.
A title holder of a commercial property within the Commercial Revitalization Program’s target area is eligible to apply for assistance under the program, which will provide up to 50 percent of matching funds for improvements.
Tenants must obtain the consent of their landlords in writing in order to participate in the program.
Assistance comes in the form of a reimbursable grant, Green said.
The grant balance will be forgiven by ten percent per year over a 10-year grant period, according to a city document. Should the owner not comply with the terms of the agreement, following city notification of non-compliance and owner’s failure to cure the item of non-compliance, the then outstanding grant balance will be immediately due and payable to the city.
Green said Peoria does not have a specific amount of money set aside for the program and business owners would contract for the services, not the city.
“All projects are evaluated on a case-by-case basis and would go before City Council for funding appropriation,” Green said.