Grants are available for eligible construction and/or restoration projects in the downtown and core areas through the Strategic Core Area Community Improvement Plan (CIP).

Community Improvement Plan

A Community Improvement Plan (CIP) is a tool used to focus municipal initiatives in areas in need of development and/or redevelopment. Adopting a CIP empowers the City to offer grants to cover all or part of the cost of eligible improvement projects.

Strategic Core Areas Community Improvement Plan (CIP)

Thunder Bay's Strategic Core Areas are our main city centres. They are the public, cultural, social and economic engines of the City. The purpose of this plan is to promote new life and growth in core areas to encourage public and private investment overall. This will support the long-term economic, social and cultural health of these Strategic Core Areas.

Changes to the Strategic Core Areas CIP were approved by City Council on January 25, 2021. These changes include the creation of three new grants, a modest expansion to the Westfort Project Area, and other minor updates. 

Please see the amended Strategic Core Areas Community Improvement Plan.

Grants are available for development projects that are within the project areas and meet all other eligibility requirements. Please see the Strategic Core Areas 2024 Financial Program Guide.

Project areas

The North Core, South Core, and Westfort Business Area are designated as CIP project areas.

Financial Incentive Programs

Construction Assistance Grant Program


A stand-alone grant stream with the goal of encouraging and supporting the construction of new residential units. Visit the Construction Assistance Grant Program webpage for more details. Grants are available up to $20,000/unit for single bedroom and up to $30,000/unit for two or more bedrooms for the cost to construct new residential units, to a maximum of $100,000 per property. This grant can also be stacked with other grants.

Existing Grant Programs

The following grants are currently available. These grants can be combined for a total maximum of $25,000 per property.

Planning and Building Fee Grant

A rebate of planning application fees and building permit fees

Commercial Conversion Grant – Main floor

A grant equal to 50% of the cost of renovating and converting main floor residential to commercial use up to a maximum of $10,000

Residential/Office Conversion Grant – Upper floor(s)

A grant equal to 50% of the cost of renovating and converting second floor or higher units to residential or office use up to a maximum of $10,000

Commercial Façade Improvement Grant

A grant equal to 50% of the cost of improvements to the façade of commercial storefront buildings up to a maximum of $10,000 

How to apply

An application form must be submitted together with all required supporting documentation to the Planning Services Division. Both Conversion Grants and the Façade Grant require photos of the existing conditions, conceptual drawings for the improvements, and two cost estimates for the proposed work. 

Grant applications must receive approval prior to starting any of the work related to the requested grant.

To begin your application, please contact Planning Services


If you require a PDF in an accessible format, contact our Municipal Accessibility Specialist.

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