Small Business Grant Program

To assist in the creation of new small businesses or the physical expansion of existing small businesses in targeted commercial corridors by providing forgivable loans to qualified applicants.

Eligible Applicants

New small business owners occupying vacant space, or expanding small business owners. The business must be located in a first-floor storefront unit with emphasis to the Creative Economy.

Eligible Uses

  • Furniture & Fixtures
  • Interior Renovations
  • Merchandising Equipment
  • Retail and/or food service equipment


This program is funded through the City of Worcester's Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds, which are allocated by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The funding amount per project is based upon the total new square footage to be occupied by the entrepreneur or existing business owner. The maximum funding amount per project is not to exceed 50% of the total project cost.

Total Square Footage to be Occupied Maximum Funding Amount
Up to 1,500 Square Feet Maximum of $25,000
1,500 to 2,500 Square Feet Maximum of $50,000
2,500 or More Square Feet Maximum of $75,000

HUD Eligibility Requirements

In order to be eligible for CDBG funding, each applicant must qualify as meeting one of the following national objectives of the CDBG program:

  • Benefiting Low- and Moderate-Income Persons
  • Meeting an Urgent Need
  • Prevention or Elimination of Slum or Blight

Additional Information

For more information and to apply, contact:

Vaske Gjino
Assistant Chief Development Officer
508-799-1400 x31418

Contact Information

Economic Development
City Hall 4th Floor
455 Main Street
Worcester, MA 01608

Accessible via WRTA Bus Line. View Schedules

Phone: 508-799-1400
Fax: 508-799-1406
Email Us

Office Hours:
Monday - Friday
8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.

City of Worcester
Worcester 311
Monday - Friday
8 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Phone: 311
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