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FAQ's
 

Is there land available?  Is there a building available?  How can I find out?
For vacant land, contact David Ebersole at 216.664.2204 as well as for information on the City of Cleveland’s Industrial and Commercial Land Bank. For available buildings, a commercial broker or real estate professional can help you. However, a list of available properties can also be found here.

The City owns property next to mine.  How can I purchase it?
For vacant land, contact David Ebersole at 216.664.2204 as well as for information on the City of Cleveland’s Industrial and Commercial Land Bank.

What environmental risk do I have when purchasing an Industrial or Commercial property?  How can the City help?  What should I do to protect myself?
The City does not make recommendations for or against the purchase of any property. The City recommends that a prospective buyer seek advice from an experienced environmental consultant and an attorney knowledgeable in environmental liability issues.

What funding is available for businesses looking to expand in Cleveland?
The Vacant Property Initiative (VPI) can be used to expand a business to an adjacent building or property if it has been at least 40% vacant for the last 2 years or longer. Job creation is a required outcome for this program. For parking lots, expansions only are eligible for the “Local Parking Needs Program.”

What are the requirements for using City funds?
There are two forms that the City will send you for completion after the funds have been disbursed:

Income Verification Forms- to be completed by new employees when they are hired
Annual Job Creation Report- to be completed, signed and submitted by the business

Information from these forms is used in the City’s annual reports. Therefore, the business must send the signed originals to the Department of Economic Development (601 Lakeside Ave, Rm. 210, Cleveland, OH 44114).

These forms must be submitted by December 15th so the City has time to review them before the end of the year. When the business has reached the job creation figures in the loan agreement, a staff person from the Department of Economic Development will visit the business to complete a Final Job Creation Report.

The project facilities must also be in compliance with the requirements of the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990, as amended. The general contractor should be made aware of this early on in planning the design and construction. In addition, the project must comply with MBE/FBE/SBE regulations on construction that exceeds $10,000. Construction projects where City assistance exceeds $100,000 must hire 20% Cleveland residents for the project.

Where do I go to get a license to operate a Food Truck or a Food Cart?
A license can be obtained after approval of an application submitted to Cleveland’s Department of Public Health. The location is 75 Erieview Plaza, 3rd Floor. A planning guide can be found here.

What programs are there in the City, County and/or State to assist with the acquisition of a building or new equipment for my business?
To arrange for an "ED Overview" meeting, call 216.664.2406. The ED Team makes presentations to individuals, businesses and groups about loan and grant programs. Information on grants and loans can be found here.

Does the City finance startup businesses?
Businesses must demonstrate adequate collateral, credit and capacity to repay the loan. The business must provide 10% equity and the owner or majority stockholder may be required to provide a personal guarantee for the loan amount.