It’s what every neighborhood wants: vibrant commercial and retail districts offering good jobs, shops, services, entertainment options, and healthy food close by–businesses that add to the life and spirit of the community. That’s what LISC has set out to create with the FOCUS (Fostering Commercial Urban Strategies) program.
FOCUS is designed to bolster economic opportunity in Indianapolis’s urban neighborhoods. Developed by LISC in partnership with the Indy Chamber, the City of Indianapolis, and the Indianapolis Coalition for Neighborhood Development, FOCUS’s goal is to build long-lasting relationships that connect neighborhoods with businesses and other resources in a way that helps drive and support neighborhood revitalization. LISC’s FOCUS program has triggered tremendous community benefit over the last ten years, becoming one of the most effective and long-standing neighborhood commercial revitalization programs in the country.
To attract new employers and help existing businesses succeed, FOCUS has developed a wide range of tools used to revitalize real estate and renew a sense of vibrancy along targeted districts throughout the city.
The Small Business Facade and Property Improvement Program is a component of FOCUS that provides matching grants to property owners willing to renovate the street-front exteriors of their structures.
Ultimately the goal of FOCUS is to enhance the overall development of Indy’s neighborhoods and their connection to the local and regional economy. Given this, the FOCUS program is currently utilizing lessons learned to address not only “walkable” commercial districts but also the revival of urban industrial sites that have the potential to host and attract substantial employment opportunities.
FOCUS has targeted its investments in particular business districts throughout the city. Learn more about these prioritized FOCUS Commercial Corridors and the organizations that support them.
Those interested in commercial revitalization and real estate development in neighborhoods can check out LISC’s financing tools to see how we can help.
For additional information and more resources, check out our Program Partners under Economic Development.