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Posted on: March 12, 2012

Incentives Without Walls awards almost $86K to seven business, community improvement projects

The Kansas Department of Commerce announced today that it will award almost $86,000 in Incentives Without Walls funding for business and community improvement projects in El Dorado, Holton, Hutchinson, McPherson, Peabody, Phillipsburg and Winfield.

Funding will be matched by a combined $732,767.93 in private funds, which equates to a $8.52-to-$1 private-to-public funding ratio for the seven projects. Projects include three new businesses/startups, one business expansion project and three building renovation/repair projects that will create approximately 21 new jobs. The funds are distributed as zero percent loans.

IWW funds provide direct financial support to downtown businesses in designated Kansas Main Street program cities to stimulate private investment. Kansas Main Street is a self-help technical assistance program that targets preservation and revitalization of downtown districts. There are 25 designated Kansas Main Street cities.

“We are pleased to award these very deserving communities with the IWW funding they need to undertake much needed projects,” said Mary M. Helmer, Kansas Main Street state coordinator for the Department. “The IWW funding, along with the private matching funds it leverages, allows us to assist the rural communities that are so important to the livelihood of our state.”

Funding for the IWW program is provided by the Economic Development Initiatives Fund, which is derived from Kansas Lottery proceeds. The following Kansas Main Street projects will receive IWW funds:

El Dorado
El Do Froyo Frozen Yogurt Company will receive $15,000 to assist with an equipment purchase for its new business located at 135 N. Main in downtown El Dorado.

Lifetime Eye Care, located at 121 W. 4th Street in downtown Holton, will receive $5,000 to renovate the former second story apartment, including removal of old flooring, refinishing the floors and walls, remodeling the bathroom, new electrical, HVAC and repairing the windows to prepare for a new business.

Earthworks Studio will receive $10,000 to renovate a downtown building badly damaged by fire in 2009 at 204 North Main Street.

Mattress Haven will receive $12,270 to assist with interior renovations to create a rental apartment upstairs and a commercial storeroom for the business downstairs in a building located 310 N. Main Street in downtown McPherson.

Peabody Development Corp. will receive $18,500 to renovate six historic, currently empty storefronts located at 115-125 N. Walnut.

Third Street Bakery will receive $5,114.13 for roof repairs and guttering on the building located at 729 Third Street in downtown Phillipsburg.

Marquee Performing Arts Center, 1007 Main Street in downtown Winfield, will receive $20,000 to assist in the installation of fire sensor equipment, exit lights, ADA accessible restrooms and a front door. The project will allow the opening of a 541-seat capacity theater that can be used for multiple purposes.

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