Open enrollment has now ended however, the UEZ application will remain open for businesses to apply.
Applicants will be placed onto a waitlist and may be called depending on available funding.

  1. Minimum matching funds for the program has been reduced from $10,000.00 to $5,000.00. This change is effective as postdate and applied to all applicants.
  2. 12 business limit has now been removed. This change will result in more businesses having access to the program. This change is effective as postdate.

About The Program

Welcome to the Camden Strong Facade Program! This program aims to enhance the visual appeal and overall quality of businesses within the Camden area. As a business owner, participating in this program can provide you with resources and assistance to improve the exterior appearance of your establishment. Remember to carefully read and follow all instructions provided in the application and any accompanying guidelines or materials. Good luck with your application, and we hope the Camden Strong Facade Program helps enhance the visual appeal of your business!

Saint Joseph’s Carpenter Society (SJCS) is working with the City of Camden’s Urban Enterprise Zone to implement The Camden Strong Facade Improvement Program. This program is an effort to improve the economic growth in areas throughout the City of Camden through façade improvements to businesses registered with the UEZ. This program pays for permits and construction. This program offers assistance of up to $50,000.00 for exterior improvements to a commercial building within the boundaries of the City UEZ zone.

This is a matching fund program with a minimum of $5,000.00 up to a maximum of $25,000.00 to be provided by the participant. The city program will then match the amount the participant provides.

What The Process Looks Like

First Step – Open Enrollment

The open enrollment period for this application will be open for a total of 4 weeks beginning 05/23/2023 and ending 06/23/2023. The applicantion can be completed via online or by paper obtained by visiting SJCS office on 20 Church St. Camden, NJ 08105 or by printing the application online in the “Apply Now” section. Applicants must return the completed application in a sealed envelope to SJCS office. No applications will be accepted after the deadline date has passed. Once open enrollment ends, the application will be processed and scored based on a point system. Only one application per building street address is eligible, however, buildings with multiple independent addresses are permitted to submit multiple applications. Only one application will be accepted for buildings with multi-unit under the same address.

Second Step – Review of Application & Acceptance

All applications received prior to the 06/23/2023 deadline will be scored by a panel of staff for completeness and accuracy due to limited funds. A first review of the application will determine if an application is eligible by checking to see if all documents are received. After the initial eligibility screening, a maximum of 100 points will be awarded to each application. After all applications have been scored, the top scoring applications will be selected to receive services.

Third Step – Preconstruction Meetings

Selected applicants will be asked to schedule a preconstruction meeting with SJCS staff where the building in the application is inspected, and the scope of work is devised. The scope of work is shared with the property and/or business owner to get their sign-off. Once approved, SJCS will bid the project to prequalified contractors and select the lowest responsible contractor. External contractors are not allowed.

Fourth Step – Closing

Once the bid has been selected, the property owner and/or business owner is required to attend a closing where the selected contractor and owner(s) meet one another, and contact information is shared. The applicant will be required to sign the mortgage in the amount of the City grant. The construction schedule is discussed. At this time, the applicant will need to bring their portion of the grant as a certified check or money order made payable to: Saint Joseph’s Carpenter Society.

Fifth Step – Construction

SJCS will monitor the progression of the work through site visits, progress reports, and photos. Once work is completed, final inspections will take place as well as contractor updates of completion to SJCS and property/business owner. SJCS will be responsible for making payments to contractors.

Sixth Step –  Closeout

After completion of work, SJCS will conduct a final inspection of the property to ensure the work has
been completed according to the approved application. Final paperwork will be signed by
property/business owner acknowledging completion of work. A final report will be made to ensure
proper payments and file closeout. The mortgage will be recorded at this time and the applicant will
receive a copy of the mortgage.

How To Participate

Businesses who are interested in participating in the program must be UEZ members. If a business is not currently a member, they can visit “How to Become A UEZ Member” and follow the step-by-step process. Once a business is registered with the UEZ, they can apply for the façade program either online or through paper application by going to “APPLY NOW” for the full instructions on how to complete and submit an application. The open application period will be open for a total of 4 weeks beginning 05/23/2023 and ending 06/23/2023. The completed application must be submitted before the deadline.

Visit our “FAQ’s” for frequently asked questions to find helpful information covering the program.

For additional information regarding the program, you can reach out to Ruben Peres, SJCS.
Phone: (856) 966-8117