WHPDC’s commercial work consists of two primary programs: Commercial Supportive Services and Special Service Areas.
WHPDC's Commercial Supportive Services (CSS), coupled with strong retail and commercial opportunities, affordable and available commercial space and vacant parcels create a compelling incentive for new and expanding businesses to select Chicago’s West Humboldt Park as their home. As a long standing service in the City of Chicago, CSS supports businesses by connecting them to City services:
Connecting businesses to local elected officials
Aligning businesses with various City departments and programs
Assisting with applications for City of Chicago small business loans and grants
Providing technical assistance with start-up and existing businesses
Assistance locating available commercial/retail space
Commercial Resources Success Stories
We assisted Adolfo with acquisition of an adjacent vacant City-owned lot, and provided technical assistance with expansion of commercial building, financing and utilization of Small Business Improvement Fund (SBIF) grant. SBIF uses Tax Increment Financing (TIF) to help owners of commercial and industrial properties repair or remodel their facilities with reimbursement grants of up to 75% of project cost...
Oliver's House of Beauty
We assisted the business owner, Ethel, with renovation of her salon and commercial storefront. Improvements included a new roof, tuck pointing, new floors, basement waterproofing and more. She received assistance with the scope of work, contractor selection, and utilization of a Small Business Improvement Fund (SBIF) grant. Ethel received reimbursement from the grant program. Ethel has been a salon owner since the 1970s.
Through our Smart Communities technology program, we did a Tech Assessment of the restaurant, created a Tech Action Plan laying out suggested web-based marketing strategies to drive business and increase revenue. Created and developed e-newsletter campaign and social media campaign to increase revenues. Paisano’s Tacos, located on the Paseo Boricua, has been family owned since 1972.
Nellies Restaurant & Café Calao
Through our Smart Communities technology program, we did a Tech Assessment of the restaurant, created a Tech Action Plan, and developed a social media and website strategy to drive business to Paseo Boricua restaurant and cafe. We provided a Dell Optiplex 380 Desktop computer loaded with MS Office and QuickBooks Pro. Provided discounted mobile internet service allowing customers to enjoy free Wi-Fi at low owner cost.
Turkey Chop Gourmet Grill
Complete turn-key build-out of storefront space for new sit-down healthy grill restaurant. Provided a tech consultant to set up a social media platform and develop a social media strategy. We suggested appropriate software for employee check-in and check –out. And we provided assistance in marketing of the restaurant and grand opening event.
Set up a crowdfunding campaign through KivaZip for Edwin Ayala's energy efficiency lighting retrofit business - EE2. Edwin was able to obtain a $5,000 zero-percent (0%!) loan through online lending platform KivaZip for working capital which carried him through the remainder of his program year with ComEd when additional program funds became available.