Bricks & Clicks Grants Offer Up to $1,000 for Downtown Stevenson Businesses to Upgrade Facades or E-Commerce Platforms
Stevenson, Wash. — The Stevenson Downtown Association (SDA) announced earlier this week the launch of its Bricks & Clicks Grant Program to support local businesses in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Applications are available at stevensonmainstreet.org.
“The new Bricks & Clicks Grant Program encourages business expansion — and more importantly business retention — by providing resources to downtown merchants for facade improvements or e-commerce solutions,” said Executive Director Kelly O’Malley-McKee, who was hired in March as the SDA’s first employee. “We are thrilled to be able to award up to $1,000 per approved project in hopes of taking some of the sting our local businesses are experiencing right now.”
Due to the economic impact of COVID-19 since the spring, projects underway or already completed may be considered for work that began on/after April 1, 2020.
“While any approved applicant will be responsible for remaining costs above $1,000, this is a reimbursement grant,” said O’Malley-McKee. “So, in an effort to further support local, SDA will provide 100% reimbursement for approved project expenses that utilize Skamania County vendors and 75% reimbursement for any other vendors.”
Examples of acceptable “Bricks” projects could include exterior building remodeling and improvements, business signage and exterior paint that’s within the recommended city palette, as well as awnings, windows, doors, landscaping and more.
Examples of acceptable “Clicks” projects could include website hosting or domain fees for new sites, PayPal/ Venmo/ Square set-up for web-based software, or point of sale systems that integrate with online shopping, or shopping cart software like Shopify and others.
“Any software or e-commerce programs should support brick and mortar operations, as we will not fund applications that move a mode of business strictly online,” added O’Malley-McKee. “Remember, the goal is to retain businesses in our downtown district.”
Applications are accepted by mail or online on a rolling basis through the end of 2020. All of the guidelines, requirements and grant application are available at stevensonmainstreet.org.
The SDA will likely continue the Bricks & Clicks Grant Program beyond 2020 if it proves helpful to the community and additional funding can be secured. The local non-profit plans to announce a non-grant program in November to provide additional support to downtown restaurants and retailers during the shoulder season.
The Stevenson Downtown Association is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, affiliated with both Washington Main Street and Main Street America. This coalition of local business owners, public officials and community leaders work to promote and revitalize downtown Stevenson to support our local economy and small businesses.
As a Main Street America AffiliateTM, the Stevenson Downtown Association is part of a national network of more than 1,200 neighborhoods and communities who share both a commitment to creating high-quality places and to building stronger communities through preservation-based economic development.