Up to $500,000 in Grants Available to STEAP-Eligible Municipalities and Municipalities with Populations of
Less than 30,000

Recently passed legislation created the Main Street Investment Fund Program providing grants of up to $500,000 to eligible municipalities that have approved plans to develop or improve their town’s commercial centers.  The Main Street Investment Fund Program is administered by the Office of Policy and Management (OPM) through an application process.

Connecticut Main Street Center (CMSC), in collaboration with OPM, held a series of workshops around the State in July and August 2012 to provide information on this program, including who may apply and project eligibility requirements.  The PowerPoint presentation from the workshops and sample Town Commercial Center Plans are provided below, as is a brief summary of  the Main Street Investment Fund Program.  

Main Street Investment Fund Program Overview

PA 11-1, An Act Promoting Economic Growth and Job Creation, Sections 78 and 79, provides grants not to exceed $500,000 to municipalities with populations of not more than 30,000 or municipalities eligible for the Small Town Economic Assistance Program (STEAP).  The grant can be used for improvements to property owned by the municipality.  A portion of the proceeds of the grant may be used to provide a one-time reimbursement to owners of commercial private property for eligible expenditures that directly support and enhance an eligible project.

Eligible Project(s)

Project(s) that are part of a plan (aka Town Commercial Center Plan) previously approved by the governing body of the municipality to develop or improve town commercial centers are eligible.  These plans should include strategies/improvements to attract small businesses, promote commercial viability, and improve aesthetics and pedestrian access.

Eligible Uses of Grant Funds

Eligible uses of the grant funds include:

  • Expenses for cosmetic and structural exterior building improvements;
  • Signage;
  • Lighting;
  • Landscaping that is visible from the street; and/or
  • Other architectural features approved by OPM.

Activities that are not eligible for the Program include:

  • Any renovations that are solely the result of ordinary repair and maintenance;
  • Improvements that are required to remedy a health, housing or safety code violation; or
  • Non-permanent structures, furnishings, movable equipment or other non-permanent amenities.

Application Deadline: The application must be received or post marked by September 28, 2012 at 4:30 PM.

For a Main Street Investment Fund Fact Sheet, Program Application and Instructions visit: www.ct.gov/opm/mainstreet.

Helpful Documents
Some files are large and may take a few moments to download.

Informational Workshop Presentation

Frequently Asked Questions

Sample Plans
Northwestern CT Regional Planning Collaborative – Current Conditions Report
Northwestern CT Regional Planning Collaborative – Wayfinding Analysis
Putnam - Visioning PowerPoint Presentation 
Putnam – Walking Audit Report
Simsbury – Charrette Final Report
Simsbury – Rt 10 Corridor 
Suffield Case Study
Westville Village – Resource Team Final Report
Windsor Locks Case Study
Winsted - Facade Improvement PowerPoint Presentation

Santa Maria Planning Principle

Managing Downtown Through a Streetscape Project