Downtown Hampton & Phoebus Retail Incentive Program


The purpose of this program is to increase the retail presence and sales in Downtown and Phoebus by providing incentives to attract and retain quality retail businesses.

Administering Body/Responsible Parties

The Hampton Economic Development Authority (EDA) administers this program. The Hampton Economic Development Department provides support.

Who May Apply

Retail businesses or retail property owners located within the Downtown Hampton and Phoebus Master Plan areas may apply.

Policy for Considering Assistance Requests

Applications under the Downtown Hampton and Phoebus Retail Grant Program are accepted on a case-by-case basis. Applications are to be submitted and accepted by the City of Hampton Department of Economic Development (HDED). Grant awards are discretionary and made by the Board of the Economic Development Authority (EDA) upon review of the project for eligibility and its ability to fulfill the stated goals of the program. Executed grant agreements are required prior to disbursement of funds. Applicants must follow the adopted grant application process to be considered for a grant award. Applications will be open until all funding is committed.

  • Pre-Application Review. A preliminary meeting with HDED staff is recommended. The meeting gives potential applicants and staff the opportunity to discuss a proposal and provide guidance to the applicant. The applicant shall incur all initial project costs and may receive reimbursement in accordance with the grant award.
  • Application Submittal. After an application has been submitted, HDED staff will examine the application, plans, timeline and costs. Applicants will be contacted if there are any questions about their proposal before it is submitted to the EDA loan and grant committee. Work can begin once a complete application is submitted and accepted by the Hampton Department of Economic Development. Although not required, applicants are recommended to submit their application and receive approval prior to the commencement of any work. In any event, an application submission does not guarantee a grant award and all submissions are subject to program guidelines.
  • Committee Action. The EDA loan and grant committee will review the project and will make a recommendation to the full EDA Board. The Committee will instruct HDED staff to prepare information to be presented to the Authority for its approval or denial. All decisions by the Authority are final.
  • Grant Agreement. Approved applicants are required to execute a Grant Agreement in which the Authority agrees to pay for the authorized work and the applicant agrees to complete the work in accordance with the approved application.
  • Issuance of Reimbursement. Following installation and completion of the project improvements and/or project milestones, the Grantee must submit to HDED all invoices for the project. After the HDED verifies work, payment, permitting and determines that the invoices are correct and that the work has been completed in accordance with the Authority’s approval, the reimbursement will be issued.

Financial Assistance Offered

Qualifying uses for financial assistance include:

  • Costs associated with acquisition, construction, expansion or the rehabilitation of a retail facility.
  • Site and building demolitions related to upgrading real estate.
  • Permanent exterior improvements (i.e. enhanced entrances or storefronts) or interior improvements.
  • Building signage and exterior lighting.
  • Certain soft costs associated with the development of real property such as architectural, engineering, permitting, etc.
  • Equipment and fixtures that are classified as items of personal property which, through its attachment to, or association with, real estate, loses its identity as personal property and becomes real property.
  • Upgraded parking surface areas (paving) with associated landscape improvements.
  • Rental assistance which shall not exceed the first 6 months of the lease.

More Information