ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Ex Novo Brewing Co. has been working on taking over the old Firestone building at 7th Street and Central Avenue. Now, the city says it’s putting some funding towards the project via the Storefront Activation Grant Program.
“We’re investing in the success of downtown because we believe in the potential it has to be an anchor of opportunity and fun for Albuquerque families,” Mayor Tim Keller said in a press release. “We’re so happy to see a local success story like this one writing its next chapter downtown with the help of this transformative City program.”
The city’s Metropolitan Redevelopment Agency (MRA) awarded Ex Novo $75,000 for renovations at the site. The project is set to be done and open next summer.
“These grants are a powerful incentive offered by our department to support local businesses and create opportunities for them to thrive,” MRA Director Terry Brunner said in a press release. “We encourage folks to apply for our Storefront Activation Grant program, which will not only support their success but also enable them to contribute to the exciting development underway Downtown.”
Ultimately, the renovation will include a full-service restaurant, a patio with a beer garden, and a café, according to the MRA. That’s exactly the kind of project the grant program is for: The program is designed to help increase foot traffic downtown, decrease vacant buildings, and create well-designed storefronts, according to the MRA. Other businesses can apply for grants on the city’s website.
“Ex Novo chose the downtown core as our second New Mexico location because of the current and expected future vibrancy of the area,” Joel Gregory, founder of Ex Novo Brewing Co., said in a press release. “We’d love to contribute to what Downtown Albuquerque means to people for the next 20 years, and this grant is a helpful vote of confidence that the city also wants us there and is willing to help support business growth in the area.”