About the DDA Façade Improvement Grant Program
The Alpena DDA Façade Improvement Grant was developed to enhance the historic character of our downtown district through awarding grants to projects that improve and preserve the exteriors of existing historic buildings within the DDA district. Properties located within the legal boundary of Alpena's downtown district engaging in retail, commercial, entertainment, or office services are eligible for grant requests. All applications are reviewed by the DDA Design & Beautification Committee.
Grant funding may be requested for any façade (front, side, or rear) that fronts on a public right of way (street, alley, public parking lot). Applicants may apply for up to $10,000 in funding per façade. All grants require a 50% cash match; a project may total over $20,000 but the DDA's contribution is limited to $10,000/facade.
Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. The funding cycle corresponds with the fiscal year, which runs July 1- June 30.
Past Façade Grant Recipients
The Alpena Downtown Development Authority (DDA) began the Façade Grant program in 2004, and since then, has awarded over $140,000 in façade grants to downtown projects, which have totaled over $2 million in investment. The Alpena DDA has been proud to support projects which have transformed our downtown and preserved its historic character. You can learn more about recent projects supported by our façade grant program below!
109 & 111 River St. | Red Brick Tap & Barrel
Awarded in 2018
This project included the complete renovation of two historic buildings which were built in the late 1800's. The renovation included the addition of a new whiskey bar and restaurant on the first floor, Red Brick Tap & Barrel, which opened in September 2020, and apartments upstairs. This project was also made possible by a grant through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation's Community Revitalization Program.
107 N. Second Ave.
Awarded in 2017
This building was originally built at the turn of the 19th century, and in the late 1920's, received extensive remodeling to its interior and façade after a fire. The improvements done in 2017 included removing a wooden framing placed over the façade, reopening the windows, and adding elements that match the historic character of neighboring downtown buildings.