DRI funds to help two new downtown businesses


The City of Rome’s Business Assistance Fund, a Downtown Revitalization Initiative priority project, is awarding funds from Round 2 Phase 1 to help facilitate two new businesses set up shop in Downtown Rome, according to a release.

C & D Advertising and Character Coffee: Caffeine and Company will each be receiving $50,000 in DRI funds, as Round 2 awardees in the first phase of funding. 

The funding will support:

C & D Advertising relocating its advertising agency to 103 W. Court St. and rehabilitating a currently vacant building to offer photography, videography and audio
production suites to the Rome area.

Character Coffee expanding from its Utica location to Downtown Rome at 236 W. Dominick St., the former Brenda’s Natural Foods. Character Coffee plans to provide Rome with specialty drinks, food and community space that will be used to promote local artists and offer cohort rentals for freelancers, remote workers and artists. 

“The City of Rome continues to make great progress with the Downtown Revitalization Initiative (DRI) Business Assistance Funding,” said Mayor Jacqueline M. Izzo in a statement.

“The Business Assistance Fund not only assists existing small businesses in the DRI footprint with capital improvements, but also encourages new business growth and Round 2, Phase 1 has produced two new business tenants to our downtown. C&D Advertising will rehabilitate a former professional office building just off Veterans Park to a mixeduse development and we welcome Character Coffee who will create some interesting new collaborative space along with beverage offerings,” Izzo’s statement added.

Questions about funding opportunities can be emailed to: MEnos@romecitygov.com or by calling 315-339-7608.


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