Downtown Kitchener is a hub of activity, and downtown businesses want to make a lasting impression on visitors. Our façade grant program can help.

On this page:

  1. About the grant program
  2. Application
  3. Eligibility
  4. Eligible work
  5. Funding

About the grant program

We offer grants to eligible downtown property owners and tenants who want to make street-facing building façade improvements.

We only consider proposals that offer:

  • high-quality storefront and façade design
  • high quality signage
  • preservation and enhancement of upper-storey façades
  • upgrades to exterior accessibility upgrades that meet AODA standards
  • high community and streetscape impact


Applications for the façade grant program are open. We accept applications on a rolling basis.

Apply online


To be eligible for a grant, a property must be located within the Downtown Community Improvement Area, with commercial (retail, restaurant or dining, services) uses on the ground floor.

Each grant application must:

If the total value of all grant applications exceeds the amount of funding available, the applications will be rated based on predetermined criteria. A selection committee will be formed to support the decision-making process. The applications that receive the highest scores will be eligible to receive a grant.

All successful grant applications will also be subject to the terms and conditions of our Downtown Community Improvement Plan.

Eligible work

You can use your façade improvement grant in these ways:

  • repainting, cleaning or re-facing of façades
  • repair or restoration of façade masonry, brickwork or wood
  • replacement, repair or restoration of cornices, eaves, parapets and other features
  • replacement or repair of windows
  • entrance modifications that improve the appearance and/or access to the commercial units
  • redesign and reconstruction of the store front
  • installation of appropriate new signage or improvements to existing signage
  • installation or repair of canopies and awnings
  • installation or repair of exterior lighting
  • restoration of historic features
  • enhance accessibility features that meet AODA standards


Our façade improvement grants are subject to funding availability and issued upon the completion of the proposed work.

If your grant application is approved, we may pay up to half (50%) of the total cost of your project.

Eligible downtown property owners and merchants/business owners are eligible to receive grants of up to $10,000 per street address or storefront. A property or storefront cannot receive more than $10,000 under this program within a five-year period.

Buildings with multiple storefronts or street addresses are eligible for grants of up to $30,000. Buildings on corner lots, where façade improvements are proposed on both frontages, are eligible for grants of up to $20,000.

A maximum of 10% of the façade grant may be used toward soft costs, such as design fees. No building fees will be reimbursed in this round of funding.