The first grants in Monett Main Street's effort to improve the appearance of downtown Monett have been awarded. Following a review of applications, four grants have been selected for funding.
"Monett Main Street would like to thank all seven building owners who took the time to submit fašade grant applications," said Bob Berger, who serves on the design committee.
Main Street's goal in offering grants was to stimulate doable projects that would not require substantial financial investment made possible by saving over several years. The grants will provide a dollar-for-dollar match up to $1,500. Berger was especially pleased that Main Street was able to help as many as four projects enhancing downtown appearance.
The winners were:
* JAF Properties, $17,500 project, $1,500 grant. JAF Properties owns three buildings: 401, 403, and 405 E. Broadway, including the Randall, Boxx and Masri law office. The project will install complete removal of the existing fašade and replacing the storefronts with new brick, windows and columns. Active businesses operate in all three buildings.
* Flea market, $7,200 project, $1,500 grant. Owned by Lily Peterson, the business,, located at 223 E. Broadway, plans to acquire a new awning, replace broken glass tile, paint and place a mural on the east wall.
* Olen and Berneice Morris, $950 project, $475 grant. The project at Shepard's Embroider, located at 415 E. Broadway, involves power washing the awning, replacing a sign and replacing missing tile.
* Efrain Zabala, owner of the vacant building at 418 E. Broadway, $1,500 project, $750 grant. Zabala plans to install new windows, paint, remove exterior sheet meter, improve the awning and complete work on the entrance.
"We encourage the public to see how downtown changes over the next six months," Berger said.
Grants will be awarded once the building owners complete the proposed work. Berger hoped Main Street would be able to award another round of grants in 2013.