Business Façade Improvement Program

***January 9, 2023 - The Squamish-Lillooet Regional District has applied to Northern Development Initiative Trust for funding to administer the Business Facade Improvement Program again in 2023. This page will be updated once 2023 funding has been confirmed.***

Funds available through Business Façade Improvement Program

Applications Received and Reviewed on a first-come, first served basis

Program Guidelines

Application Form

The Business Façade Improvement Program provides funding to eligible property and business owners located in SLRD Electoral Areas A and B to renovate, restore or redesign commercial building façades and storefronts. The program is intented to assist communities within SLRD Areas A and B in creating diversified, resilient and sustainable local economies. Funding for the program is provided through Northern Development Initiative Trust.

Program Overview:

  • The SLRD will provide a rebate of up to 50% of the cost of eligible improvements, up to a maximum of $5,000 per building/project.
  • Projects must have a minimum total cost of $1,000. 
  • Each building / business is eligible for a one-time grant only. 
  • Applicants must match the grant contribution.
  • In order to be eligible, the applicant must submit designs and costing for the project prior to the application deadline.  
  • Approved Projects must be completed by December 31, 2022. 
  • Funding cannot carry-over from one calendar year to the next.

Quick Checklist: Are You Eligible?

All commercial properties found within SLRD Electoral Areas A and B are eligible for the program. 

You must be, either:

  • the property owner; or
  • the business owner (are paying for the improvements yourself, and you have the property owner's approval in writing); or 
  • a not-for-profit or enterprising Non-Profit organizations (tenants); or
  • a home-based businesses, applying for the way-finding signage rebate only. 

Please note:

  • All property taxes pertaining to the property must be fully paid and current;
  • There must be no outstanding building permits, stop work orders, or development permit condition requirements outstanding.

Ineligible applicants:

The grant program does not apply to:

  • Residential homes located in the commercial area;
  • Apartment buildings;
  • Government-owned buildings (even if they have business tenants);
  • Properties outside the specified area;
  • Empty buildings or businesses that are not operating (exception if the business is renovating or doing improvements to the building in anticipation of re-opening)

Is Your Project Covered by the Grant? 

Eligible façade improvements include:

  • Exterior lighting (new but not replacement);
  • Exterior architectural features;
  • Exterior surfaces and details (decorative details, moldings, trims etc.);
  • Windows (only if part of larger enhancements, no stand-alone window replacement);
  • New siding;
  • Façade painting;
  • Entrances and doorways (if part of larger project; no stand-alone entrance/doorway replacement);
  • Awnings;
  • Signage (affixed to the building);
  • Way finding signage for home-based businesses (i.e. at the bottom of a driveway) within the specified area. Signage must conform to relevant SLRD sign regulations  (see SLRD Bylaw 681, 1998 – A bylaw to regulate signs in the SLRD).
    • Signs are eligible for 50% to a maximum of $500 and must adhere to any signage bylaws and regulations
  • Accessibility improvements (ramps, wider doors, etc.) to the outside of the building only and are part of a larger façade improvement project.

Ineligible Façade Improvements:

The following improvements are not funded by the Business Façade Improvement Program: 

  • Routine maintenance;
  • Structural repairs;
  • Roofs;
  • Non-permanent fixtures (benches, planters, patios, patio heaters etc.);
  • Landscaping;
  • Paving;
  • Fencing;
  • Wheelchair ramps;
  • Interior / internal improvements;
  • Any improvements not visible from the public right of way;
  • Construction of additions, accessory buildings or new buildings;
  • Any improvements started prior to application approval; and
  • Any improvements deemed inconsistent with redevelopment purposes and design guidelines.

Eligible Costs / Expenses:

  • Direct project labour costs;
  • Design, architectural or engineering fees (related to facade only);
  • Contractor fees;
  • Rental of tools and equipment; and
  • Project-related materials and supplies.

The following costs will NOT be covered by the grant: 

  • Staff wages and/or benefits;
  • Purchase of construction tools or equipment;
  • Utilities (hydro, gas etc.);
  • Shipping costs;
  • GST;
  • Duties;
  • Permit fees;
  • Expenses related to improvements to the building façade not visible from the public right of way; and
  • Façade improvements expenses started prior to application approval.

About the Business Façade Improvement Program

An initiative of Northern Development Initiative Trust, the Business Façade Improvement program provides annual funding to municipalities and regional districts to enhance economic development by encouraging private sector investment in businesses façade improvements.

Improving the attractiveness of the community, through freshening the appearance of commercial building facades, increases community pride, economic resilience, tourism opportunities and injects value into the local economy. 

Applications, which must include completed designs of the facade improvement plan, can be submitted by email, mail or in person to:

Squamish-Lillooet Regional District
Business Façade Improvement Program
ATTN: Jeannette Nadon, Communications and Engagement Consultant
By Email:
By Mail: PO Box 219, Pemberton, BC  V0N 2L0
In person: 1350 Aster Street, Pemberton, BC

Overview of the Process

  1. If unsure, contact the SLRD to see if the building qualifies for the Façade Improvement program, discuss your project and obtain the Program Guide and Application.
  2. Submit a complete application with designs by May 31, 2022.
  3. SLRD staff will review application to ensure it meets the Design Guidelines and the Façade Improvement Guidelines.
  4. Eligible applications will be forwarded to the SLRD Project Review Committee. Successful applicants will be asked to sign a Partnering Agreement.
  5. Applicant must apply for permits and complete renovations.
  6. Applicant provides verification of expenses.
  7. Applicant provides Certificate of Completion, before and after photos, by December 31 2022.
  8. Applicant secures final inspection, if needed.
  9. SLRD staff authorise reimbursement, if agreement fulfilled.
  10. Applicant receives cheque.


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