Downtown Facade Program
CITY OF KENT
The City of Kent Downtown Facades Program (KDFP) is designed to encourage the
renovation and rehabilitation of commercial structures within the Central
Business District (CBD). Through both grants and loans funded through the
Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program, the City will assist property
owners in undertaking capital improvements designed to revitalize the City’s CBD,
promote additional pride of ownership, and create an environment conducive to
business growth and expansion. This two-tiered approach is designed to address
both the immediate needs of the City’s business and property owners, as well as
establishing a strategic, long-term approach to preserving and enhancing the
City’s architectural presence.
Listed below are the program guidelines for the KDFP Preliminary Assistance
Exterior façade improvements on both the front and rear of the buildings.
Rear façade improvements must incorporate a secondary, rear entrance to the
building that is open to customer traffic
Window and door improvements and replacement
Exterior and signage lighting
Roof and building code related repairs
Other aesthetic and functional improvements
Eligibility Requirements: Owners of existing buildings in the
City’s Central Business District as defined by City Council in 2003 are eligible
to apply for funding through the KDFP. Tenants are also eligible to apply for
KDFP assistance with the written permission of the property owner.
Architectural Review Requirements: All projects must be reviewed
and approved by the Kent Architectural Review Board to take advantage of this
program. The design criteria to be utilized by the Architectural Review Board in
evaluating applications for assistance will be established by the Board.
Incentive Package: The KDFP consists of three components:
Architectural Design Grant - In an effort to promote architectural design
that remains sensitive to the historic nature of the buildings to be
renovated, and true to its historic surroundings in the CBD, a grant of up
to $2,500 will be applied to accomplish those objectives.
Improvements Grant – 25% of the total eligible costs, up to $10,000, will
be reimbursed to applicants in the form of a direct grant.
Improvements Loan – 25% of the total eligible costs, up to $10,000, will
be loaned to applicants according to the following terms:
The maximum term of the loan is five years
The applicable initial interest rate is ½
of the prime rate as published in the Wall Street Journal at the
time the loan is closed.
The loan will be evidenced by a Promissory
Note, and will be secured by a Mortgage Deed on said property.
Promissory Notes and Mortgage Deeds shall
be signed individually and as the authorized business representative.
The loan and grant amounts will be equal,
and will be adjusted proportionally according to the estimated total
project cost. At no time will the grant amount exceed that of the loan
The balance of any outstanding loan must
be repaid within five years. In the event that the property ownership
transfers prior to the full repayment of the loan, the remaining balance
of the loan will become due and payable before title transfer will be
The City will subordinate its mortgage,
second only in lien position to that of a participating private lending
The Applicant must demonstrate a minimum
equity participation of at least 10% of the total project cost.
The applicant must agree to permit a
credit report history check, and the Community Development Director has
the final say in approving the requested loan based upon the Applicant’s
credit report/history check.
All administrative fees must be borne by
the applicant, including filing, title insurance, document preparation,
and all other related fees.
Said monies from the City will only be
paid as a reimbursement for expenses paid by the applicant.
Final reimbursement will be contingent
upon receipt of a lien waiver from all contractors participating on the
Should an initial Promissory Note,
executed by the Applicant prior to receiving City monies, be in an amount
higher than actually received by the Applicant, said Note and Mortgage
Deed shall be adjusted.
KENT DOWNTOWN FAÇADE PROGRAM
REHABILITATION DESIGN GUIDELINES
OBJECTIVE: Restore to the extent possible, the historic facades of
downtown buildings. Work shall be done in ways that are compatible with the
original design of the structure.
Historic Documentation: Owner/Applicant shall provide, to the extent
possible, historic documentation in the form of photographs and drawings,
indicating original conditions of the structure. If such documents are not
available, such information from buildings of the same period in history
shall be used as a guide.
Design Objective: Replicate Historic Façade to extent feasible. If
not feasible, create design in keeping with proportion, rhythm, geometry,
scale, materials and colors of the original facade. Synthetic materials can
be used in replace of traditional materials in keeping with the above.
Façade materials shall be restored to the extent possible. Masonry
should be re-pointed, and cleaned rather than repainted. If painting is
necessary, colors should be chosen that approximate the original color of
Upper Story Windows shall be restored if they exist, or if they are
to be replaced, done so using windows that match in style and detail. True
divided lines shall be used to the extent possible.
Storefronts, Including Bulkheads (Area below picture windows,) and
transoms (Windows or other panels above picture windows) shall be restored
to the extent possible. Cast iron posts shall be uncovered if still in
place. Storefront recessed entries shall be retained or restored if
possible. Picture/Display windows shall retain the original character in
size. Sliding or folding doors or windows that replicate the scale of
original windows may be substituted if ventilation is desired. Transom and
bulkhead areas may also be made into operable windows.
Exterior Millwork Building owners are encouraged to replicate
historic exterior millwork in keeping with the original design of the
building. Synthetic materials may be used in lieu of lumber.
Signs shall be incorporated in a fashion sensitive to the proportions
and design of the façade. Hanging signs no taller than the dimension of the
transom and panel signs incorporated in an area above the transom are
acceptable solutions subject to approval by the zoning inspector. Signs
shall not be internally illuminated, except if they are glass signs. . Signs
may also be on awning below. Tasteful, pedestrian scale signs are encouraged
on the windows and door glass.
Awnings shall be incorporated where appropriate and be installed
within or above the transom, depending upon the building design. Lettering
may be installed on the awnings per code, but shall not be backlit.
Lighting Shall be incorporated to light signs and the walking
surfaces at the entry and front of the building. Period goosenecks are
preferred to illuminate signs, but modern low voltage lights that are
discretely designed may be appropriate. Wall and Soffit lighting,
appropriate to the period of the building, is acceptable, as are small-scale
recessed light fixtures.
KENT DOWNTOWN FACADES PROGRAM APPLICATION
In the space provided below, please respond to each of the following
components. You may enter the attached forms on your computer to facilitate the
preparation of the proposal; however, the existing page breaks, titles and
statement of questions must be maintained, and all responses must be limited to
the original space provided (one page per component). Supporting documentation
may be submitted with the proposal; however, attachments may not serve
as a substitute for one or more of the proposal requirements.
CLICK ON THE BUTTON BELOW FOR A COPY OF THE APPLICATION