Glens Falls announces new Downtown revitalization initiative

Warren County
Glens Falls DRIVE

Downtown Glens Falls is starting their DRIVE program. The program is a competitive loan program to DRIVE new
small business development, foot traffic, and job creation within Downtown Glens Falls. (City of Glens Falls)

GLENS FALLS, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The City of Glens Falls and the Greater Glens Falls Local Development Corporation (GGFLDC) are announcing the official launch of the GF Business Downtown Revitalization Initiative Venture Enterprise Program (DRIVE).

As a key component of the City’s $10 million Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI), GF DRIVE will support start-up and young businesses with location and expansion within the Downtown. The City is seeking to promote new and existing business development within the DRI Target Area, including the South and Elm Street area. This area will be undergoing a “significant” redevelopment effort also sponsored by the DRI.

“As the South Street redevelopment that is at the core of the City’s DRI takes shape, we always envisioned a supporting program that would encourage business start-ups and expansion plans to fill space on South Street and other parts of the Downtown,” stated Mayor Dan Hall in describing the origins of DRIVE. “This is designed as a competition – we are seeking creative locally-owned business ideas to bring retail, craft-based, light manufacturing, and other job-producing businesses to attract more residents and visitors to Downtown.”

DRIVE will provide Deferred Loans to for-profit businesses that plan to start up or expand in vacant and underutilized space within the DRI and Downtown Business District. Loans will be based on the needs of each awarded business, and the Deferred Loan will be forgiven after five years – as long as the business continues to operate within Downtown Glens Falls and meets all other program terms.

The City is encouraging applications for business ideas that provide goods and services not currently offered in the Downtown and that add to the unique mix of retail, arts and cultural, and professional offices that benefit residents and visitors. Potential uses of GF DRIVE funding is broad, including building renovations and interior fit-up expenses, as well as non-capital expenses such as inventory and equipment, payroll for new jobs that are created, and marketing and web-based sales platforms.

There is also a 20% cash match required by each business owner that is awarded DRIVE funding, based on the total project costs that will be approved by the City during the project review process.

GF DRIVE Applications will be available as of Jan. 25, 2021 through an email request to Ms. Collins, at acollins@cityofglensfalls.com. Project Proposals must be submitted to the City by 4:00 PM on March 12, 2021 to be considered for the first round of funding. Additional questions can be directed to the contacts listed in the GF DRIVE Application materials, and the City will partner with business support agencies to help applicants put together business and expansion plans.

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