By Sean Delaney
The Emery Village BIA recently hosted a vital information session for local business owners to explain the City of Toronto’s Façade improvement funding program. As background, every year, BIA members become eligible to apply for Façade Improvement Program grants. Many who become interested in making improvements to their building façade face deadlines that become difficult to meet in the wake of the growing popularity of the program. It is available to all the 83 BIA’s in the city, including Emery. The saying goes, everybody loves free money.
Al Ruggero, Project Manager at the BIA, has an extensive background in building planning and maintenance. Ruggero led the attending BIA members through a detailed audiovisual presentation of the ins and outs of the Facade Program, as well as handling the Q and A session afterward.
“The Facade Program has changed and adapted over the past years. Some of these changes include improvements that reach beyond just having a building look more beautiful or have better curb appeal. The program is now approving safety items such as lighting, curbs, signs, sidewalks, and perhaps most important, greater access for the disabled under new provincial requirements. Those improvements would likely see the addition of wheelchair ramps, railings, and automated door opening upgrades,” he said. “Last year’s deadline in early May, produced an extensive list of applications. They are processed as they are received, until the money expires.
“It’s always best to apply early”
Feel free to contact Al Ruggero, 416 -744-7242 at his Emery Village BIA office, email: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the BIA website at: www.emeryvillagebia.ca