Federal Funds to Spruce up Downtown Kennewick - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Federal Funds to Spruce up Downtown Kennewick

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KENNEWICK, Wash.--Downtown Kennewick is changing. Some cases are subtle. Others, more evident. Take J-Storm on West First avenue. Up until a month ago, this building from 1966 had a mint green exterior. By adding brick veneer and a rail to the front, its more appealing, according to the Historic Downtown Partnership.

"It enables the businesses to do so much more than just what their able to," says Historic Downtown Partnership Executive Director, Timothy Dalton. Your dealing with a lot of small town, small business in the downtown area."

With $65,0000 dollars of grant money available 2007, small businesses like Sandstone Café must apply for funding. Then it becomes a 70-30 public-private partnership, meaning property owners pay 30% of the costs. Café owner James Ortega says he has the best breakfast in town. And now people will notice.

"With the improvements in the new awning and everything on the building and the beautiful stucco job that's being done today," admits Ortega. It will be an attractive place to go.

Farmers Exchange on Canal drive received $40,000 dollars to revamp its exterior. But that encouraged the owner put in $100,000 dollars of his own money.

"This facade improvement certainly encouraged us to take an eye-sore here on this corner and put their money into it as well as a whole bunch of ours," says Property Owner Ken Silliman>