Facade Grant Program

The Facade Improvement Grant was created to encourage private investment through the renovation of facades in downtown Chapel Hill, to encourage good design, and to preserve the architectural character that is unique to Chapel Hill.  Any business or property owner located within the Downtown Chapel Hill Municipal Service District is eligible to apply.

Chapel Hill's Signage Ordinance Revised!

In June 2016, Chapel Hill Town Council approved a major revision to Chapel Hill's Sign Ordinance making several improvements and new allowable signs.  

Learn About the Changes Here


Eligible Projects

  • Lighting for the exterior of the building
  • Business Signs
  • Awnings
  • Paint removal from brick surfaces by chemical & water wash methods only
  • Repair/replacement of windows and doors with compatible materials and design
  • Removal of false facades and other inappropriate additions
  • Reconfiguration and landscaping of parking lots
  • Other projects based on Downtown Partnership approval

The Process

Grant applications may be submitted to Chapel Hill Downtown Partnership at any time. Due to funding cycles, the award of grants begin with the fiscal year beginning July 1st of each year, based on funding availability. 

  1. Submit your grant application below
  2. Email photographs, and drawings to Bobby Funk bobby@downtownchapelhill.com to make sure your submission is complete.
  3. Once your grant is approved funds will be disbursed when proof of payment for work has been submitted to the Downtown Partnership.  Proof of payment must clearly indicate that funds were paid to granted project.  

Guidelines

  • Grants are awarded on a 50/50 matching basis up to $500 (example: approved projects that cost $1,000 will be funded at $500) unless otherwise noted
  • Corner buildings may be eligible for a maximum grant of $1,000 if two or more sides face a city street and two or more sides are effected by the improvements
  • Any parking lot or improvement other than a building shall is eligible for up to $250 in funding
  • All design proposals must meet with the zoning requirements of the Town of Chapel Hill, and be properly permitted through the Town of Chapel Hill.  Contact Mike Klein (mklein@townofchapelhill.org) in the Planning department for guidance on submitting your application for signage (available here)
  • All projects must be completed within six months of the date that grant is awarded. 

  • Facade grants may only be used to finance exterior public-facing improvements

  • Facade projects must be completed with supporting materials submitted to the Downtown Partnership within six months of grant approval.