The Annex Receives Grant From ViBe Creative District Matching Grant Program

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

​Virginia Beach Economic Development, in collaboration with the Office of Cultural Affairs and the ViBe Creative District, approved a grant for The Annex from the ViBe Creative District Matching Grant program. These grants are designed to provide financial support to small and locally-owned and operated businesses located within the ViBe Creative District.

The Annex is a collaborative studio for entrepreneurs located at 529 Virginia Beach Blvd. It is comprised of two separate flex spaces that can accommodate up to 50 people. The spaces are used to connect The Annex clients through workshops, networking events, client consultation, monthly book club and team training. The approved project will enhance the exterior of the building with a plaid mural painted by local artist Igor Acord.

"The benefits of the project are both creative and sophisticated," said Virginia Beach Economic Development Director Warren D. Harris. "It will add curb appeal, compliment the neighboring murals and attract more entrepreneurial business opportunities. Increased attraction will also draw patrons for the neighboring businesses in the ViBe Creative District."

Megan Hogan, The Annex owner/program coordinator, said, "There's a lot of momentum happening in the ViBe Creative District right now, and I'm excited to be a part of it. As a military spouse and a creative entrepreneur, opportunities like this matching grant are greatly appreciated."  Megan will oversee the improvements and matching grant of $1,650 with the total improvement cost estimated at $3,300.

ViBe Creative District Matching Grants are to be used for building improvements, equipment to expand or modernize businesses and façade improvements. Types of improvements funded include enhanced entrances or storefronts, lighting, fencing, signage, landscaping, parking upgrades and open-air café spaces. Projects must make a demonstrable improvement to the property, and the funding is intended to encourage and support economic development and job growth within the District. Grant applications and additional information are available at www.yesvirginiabeach.com/city-incentives.

ViBe Creative District was established to attract creative industries to a section of the Virginia Beach oceanfront that was identified for revitalization. It was once an incubator for small and emerging businesses. In 2015, the City of Virginia Beach established the boundary of the district by ordinance and declared it "an arts and cultural district and technology zone" with incentives established by the Virginia General Assembly. The ViBe Creative District's purpose is to serve as a vibrant center for the arts, culture and technology.

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