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DDA approves faade grants

At its Thursday meeting, the Downtown Development Authority (DDA) unanimously approved grants for renovations to be made to the faades of three local businesses.

The grants were provided as part of the Faades Incentive Grant Program, which is offered by the DDA and provides up to $1,000 per renovation project.

Two of the businesses that were approved for the grant were Allison Wonderland at 310 E. Water St. and Holly Cakes at 312 E. Water St.

Repairs outlined in the applications, both submitted by David Maxwell, are to the front and back awnings of the businesses. The low bid presented was from Terry’s Awning and Canvas out of Havana, Fla., for $1,273.30. The bid includes replacement of the canvas on the front and back awnings as well as repairs to be made to the awning’s frame.

The third grant was awarded to Ivette Gutierrez for the building at 110 E. Broughton St., the former location of The Book Nook. The bid submitted in the Gutierrez’s application was from Nelson Mejia Painting Service for $3,500 and renovations include pressure washing of the front of the building and awning and the painting of the exterior faade of the building.

Relating to the grants, Community Development Director Amanda Glover made authority members aware the City’s Code Enforcement officer had sent letters to a number of downtown businesses pertaining to ripped or unsafe awnings, and the authority could expect to see more applications for faade grants in the future. The DDA will have $7,528.75 remaining in grant money devoted to the faade program for their fiscal year, which ends Sept. 31.

Chairman Al Collins gave an update on a renovation project on the Nelson Building, which will help support and stabilize the structure. He said when the project was originally bid, a crucial construction item was left out. Collins said the project has been re-bid, and reported that five or six bids for the project have been received. He said a called meeting of the DDA will be held in early March to review the bids.

Dit Albritton, Bainbridge Main Street director, gave a review of two upcoming events, the Phoenix Affair Rise in Willis Park on March 1 and the Georgia Chapter Bass Tournament, which will take place in the Earle May Boat Basin on March 7 and 8. She said about 200 boats have signed up for the tournament and a number of coupons will be created to help attract commerce to the downtown area during the event.

Albritton also reported there are three new downtown businesses—Angel Hair Salon located 116 N. Broad St., Penny Rae’s Flowers and Things located at 205 N. Clay St. and A Plus Tax Services located at 109 West St.