More grants awarded for projects
Waupaca businesses make improvements
By Angie Landsverk
The city of Waupaca’s Community Development Authority recently approved another round of grants for projects in the downtown district.
It approved five grant requests when it met on May 17.
The grants awarded total $63,285, with the private investment in the projects totaling $78,836.
The response the city has received to its new Downtown Business Incentive Program has been positive thus far, said City Administrator Aaron Jenson.
“Some of our longtime building owners have seen this as an opportunity to take care of projects that may have otherwise been deferred to future years,” he told the Waupaca County Post. “We are also seeing building owners moving in with plans to start their own businesses in the commercial space.”
The program includes grants of up to $15,000 for facade improvements and up to $25,000 for building repairs.
The 50% matching grants are awarded after projects are completed.
Funding generated by the city’s Tax Incremental District No. 4 (Western Avenue) is being transferred to TID 10 (Badger Street) for the program.
The boundary of TID 10 was amended by a half-mile radius last year to include the downtown area.
Funding of $500,000 is proposed during this first year of the program.
Last month, the Community Development Authority (CDA) awarded more grants.
• $11,375 to Sharon Holtane, who owns Weasel’s at 108 E. Union St.
The facade improvement grant is being used to rebuild the restaurant’s back brick wall.
The owner is also investing $11.375 in the project.
• $25,000 to Holtane as well for a building repair project at the same address.
This project includes a new roof and new HVAC for the restaurant’s dining room.
The private investment in this project is $32,551.
“Thank you very much,” Tom Enright told the CDA. “We really appreciate it.”
• $5,692 to Craig Gauerke for facade improvements at Aquamos, which is located at 217 S. Main St.
This project involves replacing the front door with a new glass door, as well as retrofitting the signage for energy efficiency.
The private investment in the project is also $5,962.
• $15,000 to Jamie McCallum-Krisel, of Vanity Properties, for facade improvements at the Blue Angel Salon building.
Located at 122 S. Main St., the building has three floors and houses the salon on the street level.
A space on that level was recently renovated to move the salon there.
Blue Skies Home and Garden is opening this year in the front portion of this floor.
The $15,000 grant is for 16 windows on the third story.
The private investment is $23,000.
• $5,948 to McCallum-Krisel for a new boiler for the building, with the private investment being the same amount.
The overall plan for this building is to renovate the second floor for future offices and a bridal suite and the third floor for a future ballroom, with a warming kitchen, champagne bar and restrooms there as well.
The renovation is to take place in phases, with an elevator added prior to the third floor being renovated.
This was the third round of grants the CDA approved this year.
“To this point, the program is having the impact that staff and council had envisioned when the decision was made to offer the program,” Jenson said. “The building owners, city council, the CDA and the Community Development staff all deserve a lot of credit for working together to get the program started off on the right foot.”