The DC government has recently awarded $6.8 million for small businesses through three grants programs, municipal officials said in a May 26 statement.
Mayor Muriel Bowser and the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development (DMPED) announced the latest round of awardees of the $2.5 million Great Streets Retail Small Business grant program, the $317,000 Locally Made grant program, and the $4 million Neighborhood Prosperity Fund.
“These grants build on the more than $350 million in recovery support that the District has invested in DC businesses since 2020 and continues Mayor Bowser’s effort to increase employment for residents and offer light manufacturing opportunities that provide economic stability, mitigate blight, and add vibrancy to our designated Great Streets corridors,” the statement said.
“We know how difficult the past two and a half years have been for local businesses, but we’ve been working hard to understand the needs of the small business owners in the District,” Bowser said in the statement. “And since the pandemic started, my administration, with the Council’s support, has invested over $350 million to support DC businesses.”
Led by the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development, the Great Streets Initiative is a capital improvement grant that invests in new and existing retail storefronts in 13 emerging corridors known as great street corridors, to create walkable and shoppable amenities for residents to experience in all neighborhoods. This year, Great Streets Initiative awarded 36 businesses across all eight wards, plus the 18 businesses receiving Ward 2 expansion funds.
The Locally Made Manufacturing Grant is for qualified small business and real estate developers whose core business aligns with light manufacturing. The four businesses awarded will be able to use grant funds to support capital or tenant improvements of commercial property with designated industrial use located in a Great Streets corridor.
The Neighborhood Prosperity Fund invests in development projects to fill the gaps in non-residential components of a mixed-used project, real estate, or retail development project in targeting underinvested communities to create jobs and amenities. The seven businesses awarded can use the funds to support architectural, engineering, and construction costs, tenant, and historical preservation building improvements. To date, $19 million has been invested into projects across the city.
“The District intends to continue supporting local business owners as they adapt to the shifting landscape of our economy post-COVID,” said Deputy Mayor John Falcicchio. “We know the importance of small business owners and what their resiliency represents for the community, and we want our efforts to be intentional and reflective of their entrepreneurial spirit.”
The Fiscal Year 2022 grantees include a wide range of local businesses, including restaurants, breweries, fitness studios, and more:
Ward 1: The Outrage, Momentous Sports Medicine, DC Dry, The Printer Cleaners, Shop of Flowers, Mint, La Cabana Restaurante, The Coupe, Because Science
Ward 2: Pearl’s Bagels, Tugooh, Market Square Cleaners, Secrete Fine Jewelry, 1333 14th Street NW, Yoga District, Lee Café Fairfax, BardiBari Restaurant, Greek Deli & Catering, Luna Café, Glass House Coffee, O Street Museum Foundation, Mason’s Famous Lobster Rolls, Flight, Transformational Acupuncture, ExPats Theater, Maxwell Park Shaw, Nari, Penn Quarter Sports Tavern
Ward 3: Le Chat Noir, Italian Pizza Kitchen, Blue 44
Ward 4: Atxondo, Zuri Bistro, Kukus Beauty Supply, Zeman Market, J and J Tover, The V.I.P. Room, Deset Ethiopian Restaurant
Ward 5: Sunrise Grocery, Soul Kitchen, City-State Brewing Company, Think Italian, Excel Pilates DC, Hospitality in Transit, Via MRG, Jabbo’s Compact Market, G & K DC, Cotton & Reed, Right Forward, Don Ciccio & Figli, The Outrage, Black and Forth
Ward 6: Sewing Opportunity Never Ending, Pursuit Wine Bar – H ST, Osteria Taqueria, Cane, Pho Viet Restaurant,
Ward 7: Deanwood Valet, City Interests Development, Mamatoto Village, ADP Group
Ward 8: Project Create, Tasting Lab DC, Washington Area Community Investment Fund
Additionally, The Department of Small and Local Business Development (DSLBD) highlighted the recent awardees of the Equity Impact Enterprise grant. The EIE Grants were created in order to provide additional direct support to District-based businesses that are certified as small, resident-owned, and disadvantaged.
Out of the $1.5 million allocated for this grant, each qualified applicant was eligible to receive up to $5,000 in financial relief to assist in sustaining operations and promote overall economic resiliency as the District recovers from the effects of COVID. Accordingly, these grants could be used for reimbursement of expenses incurred between October 1, 2021 and April 25, 2022. Allowable expenses included employee/owner wages and salaries, insurance, rent, utilities, inventory, cleaning supplies, taxes, accounting and bookkeeping, and marketing, office equipment, and certifications, among other operational costs. To date, DSLBD has awarded this grant to over 215 Equity Impact Enterprises. To view a list of recipients, please visit: dslbd.dc.gov/equity-impact-enterprise-grants.
There are 13 Great Streets corridors located across the District that aim to transform developing commercial corridors into thriving and inviting neighborhood centers: Pennsylvania Avenue, SE; Georgia Avenue, NW; Nannie Helen Burroughs Avenue, NE; 7th Street, NW, North Capitol Street, NW & NE; Rhode Island Avenue, NE; Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue, SE and South Capitol Street, SE; Minnesota Avenue and Benning Road, NE and SE; Bladensburg Road, NE; Connecticut Avenue, NW; U Street – 14th Street, NW – Adams Morgan; Wisconsin Avenue, NW; H Street-Bladensburg Road, NE.
Through Great Streets, more than $40 million has been awarded to over 400 small businesses creating more than 4,000 jobs.