Riverfront Downtown Urban Renewal Area Open for Business Grant Program

The Riverfront Urban Renewal Area Open for Business Grant Program is a financial incentive opportunity to address the challenges businesses endured due to the pandemic and wildfires. As businesses transition into the recovery phase there is a need for permanent infrastructure improvements to be constructed in order to meet current and future safety protocols.

Program objectives

The goals of the Open for Business Grant Program are:

  • Provide financial assistance to help businesses in the Riverfront Downtown Urban Renewal Area (RDURA) make permanent infrastructure improvements for projects as a result of the impacts of COVID-19.

  • Provide financial assistance to help businesses in the RDURA Parking District to create new permanent spaces for outdoor seating at food and beverage establishments.


To be eligible for this grant, all projects must meet the following criteria:

  1. Property and/or business must be located within the Riverfront Downtown Urban Renewal Area Boundary. If utilizing grant funding for outdoor seating at food and beverage establishments, that property and/or business must be located within the RDURA Parking District.  

  2. Business owners of businesses that are located within the RDURA, with property owner consent.

  3. Tax exempt properties are not eligible.

  4. Properties that are 100% residential are not eligible.

  5. In-home offices are not eligible.

Eligible improvements

The following items are considered eligible expenses through this program:

  • Design work for an eligible project must be from a licensed professional

  • Construction of an outdoor dining platform (seating, planters, string-lights, movable heaters or other movable items are not eligible)

  • Install of permanent gas and/or electrical infrastructure for outdoor dining

  • Permanent improvements constructed in the interior to meet current and future safety protocols due to COVID-19. Examples of these types of improvements include but are not limited to:

    • Reconfiguration of walls or interior layout to meet social distancing requirements

    • Improvements to mitigate interior building impacts related to COVID-19

Maximum grant

Up to $20,000

Match requirement


Grant funding is contingent upon available funds and cannot fund eligible project costs completed prior to grant approval (conditions apply)

Additional terms may apply, and terms are subjective to change

General conditions

  • Approval of grant applications is contingent upon available funds.

  • All projects shall conform to the design standards of the Development Code, other applicable regulations in the City of Salem Municipal Code, and the requirements of the Oregon State Building Codes.

  • If applicable, Historic Design Review approval prior to grant commitment.

  • Once an application is approved, the applicant will be required to enter into a Grant Commitment Agreement with the City.

  • All project contractors shall, where applicable, have a valid CCB license in the State of Oregon in good standing. The cost of any work requiring a CCB license that is not completed by a licensed contractor will be required to be paid by the applicant in full.

  • Additional conditions may be included with the grant approval.

  • Grant program will sunset September 1, 2023.

Other grants available within the Riverfront Urban Renewal Area

Overview information

Grant documents

Additional information