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Mayor Bowser Kicks Off #FairShot Week and Launches $3.3M Great Streets Retail Small Business Grants

Monday, December 13, 2021
Mayor Highlights Legacy Program Among the District’s Economic Toolkit Posted at ObviouslyDC.com

(Washington, DC) – Today, Mayor Muriel Bowser and the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development (DMPED) kicked off #FairShot Week to highlight the District’s economic toolkit at ObviouslyDC.com and to launch the next round of the FY22 Great Streets Retail Small Business Grant program. The $3.3 million Great Streets investment continues Mayor Bowser’s effort to support local businesses, create new job opportunities for DC residents, and grow the District’s emerging neighborhoods. Since 2015, Great Streets has awarded over $21 million to 412 businesses helping to create more than 2,000 jobs.

“These types of grants recognize that the strength of our small businesses reflects the strength of our city,” said Mayor Bowser. “Washingtonians are proud to support local businesses. When our neighbors pour themselves into opening a business, we show our appreciation by going out of our way to support them. The Great Streets grants are one way we do that at the government level, and I hope our local businesses will look closely at how they might use these grants to grow their businesses and create more jobs and opportunity in DC.”

The announcement was made at Pop-Up Collaborative, a local women-owned, year-round pop-up catered to woman or minority owned businesses that create products. All members are based in the DMV area, and include artists, candle makers, clothing designers, and jewelry makers. They currently have three locations H Street, Downtown Holiday Market and DCA Airport.

The Great Streets grant program supports existing small businesses, attracts new businesses, and transforms designated commercial corridors into thriving and inviting neighborhood centers. The program awards up to $50,000 to eligible businesses to be used towards storefront renovations, equipment purchases, and technology enhancements to support e-commerce. Eligible businesses include small and locally-owned brick and mortar businesses and arts-based nonprofits located in designated Great Streets corridors.

This year, the Great Streets program received an additional $800,000 in funding, bringing the total available funding to $3.3 million. In addition, four existing Great Streets corridors have been temporarily extended in Ward 2, increasing the number of businesses eligible to receive funding. The extended corridors include Connecticut Avenue, Wisconsin Ave, 7th Street/Georgia Ave, and 14th Street/U Street/Adams Morgan/Mt. Pleasant.

“Our small business owners deserve a Fair Shot because they hire our residents and enliven our neighborhoods,” said Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development John Falcicchio. “Mayor Bowser has armed us with a robust economic toolkit including legacy programs like Great Streets and new ones like the Vitality Fund to ensure we are the District of Comebacks. We encourage our businesses to avail themselves to all of the tools posted at ObviouslyDC.com to be part of our collective comeback.”

The diversity of the District’s business community is highlighted through the Great Streets program, with grant recipients including an internationally accredited master chocolatier, a music training center, pet shop, restaurants, barbershops and hair salons, yoga studios, an artesian jeweler, urban farm, and more. 

The 13 Great Streets corridors in the District are located along Pennsylvania Avenue, SE; Georgia Avenue, NW; Nannie Helen Burroughs Avenue, NE; 7th Street, NW, North Capitol Street, NW & NE; Rhode Island Avenue, NE; Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue, SE and South Capitol Street, SE; Minnesota Avenue and Benning Road, NE and SE; Bladensburg Road, NE; Connecticut Avenue, NW; 14th Street/U Street/Adams Morgan/Mt. Pleasant NW, NW; Wisconsin Avenue, NW; H Street-Bladensburg Road, NE.

Throughout #FairShot Week, the Bowser Administration will highlight various new and existing programs designed to give Washingtonians a fair shot and accelerate the District’s economic recovery. The Mayor will promote some of the many tools listed on ObviouslyDC.com that provide financial assistance and guidance to local businesses and businesses that want to open in, expand to, and create jobs and opportunity in Washington, DC.