The City of Orlando’s Downtown Development Board/Community Redevelopment Agency continues to seek ways to support businesses as they begin to reopen or enhance operations responsibly as part of the state’s phased plan for reopening Florida’s economy. In turn, these efforts provide ease and convenience to our residents and visitors to experience downtown Orlando during this time.
Downtown Clean Team
The Downtown clean Team continues to assist with cleaning efforts, including graffiti removal. In an effort to keep downtown sanitized during this time, they are doing the following services in addition to their normal operational duties:
- Spraying disinfectant in the core of downtown near Orange Avenue.
- Spraying disinfectant on all lights, poles, trashcans, sidewalks, doggie stations, bus stop, and parking meters.
- Increased pressure washing
The CRA is considering hiring temporary Clean Team staff to help support the increase in clean-up and sanitation efforts and maintain pre-COVID-19 service levels.
Downtown Ambassadors will continue to monitor activity and report any damage they witness to the Orlando Police Department.
Downtown Ambassadors will be providing “touch point” disinfecting. Touch points are any surfaces in the public right-of-way that the public encounters which are not commonly disinfected on a regular basis.
Examples of areas included are crosswalk buttons, trash receptacles, animal waste bag dispensers and receptacles, bicycle racks, parking meters and parking payment machines, light poles, and public seating areas.
Free Parking: Park DTO
For a limited time, you can enjoy on-street parking and garage parking inside specific City of Orlando garages for FREE while dining and shopping downtown thanks to the Park DTO Program. Downtown businesses are working to recover from the impacts of COVID-19, and they need your help. The Park DTO Program is designed to increase visitation and spending in downtown Orlando by temporarily funding parking costs now through February 1, 2021. For more information, click here.
Parking: 30-Minute Grace Period
In an effort to further support delivery and pick-up dining options during this time, the City of Orlando has temporarily provided a 30-minute grace period for all downtown metered parking locations for customers and delivery drivers (like Uber Eats) picking up/delivering to-go orders.
For added convenience, select meters near dining establishments have been bagged and signed and are for use only by those picking up/delivering to-go orders.
Vehicles that are clearly marked for food delivery service or restaurant vehicles may park in any metered spaces (bagged or unbagged) and receive 30 minutes of unpaid parking.
Special Event Funding Amendment
The Downtown Development Board approved an amendment to its existing Special Event Funding program. The program will now provide up to $3,000 to qualifying downtown businesses to support reopening marketing efforts. Funds can be used toward reopening marketing efforts such as:
- Paid social media advertising
- Radio advertising
- Production of a banner or a-frame that can be placed outside your business
- And more
Approved businesses must follow federal/state/local phased opening plan/procedures and follow relevant CDC guidance when hosting any reopening activities or events.
Applications are available here.
MEBA Rent Abatement
Are you a minority or woman owned business in need of rent assistance?
The Minority/Women Entrepreneur Business Assistance (MEBA) Program is a small business assistance program that was established to retain existing minority-owned businesses located within the Target Area, and to attract new minority-owned businesses to this area. The MEBA Target Area(PDF, 526KB) is more specifically described as the area bounded on the north by West Colonial Drive, on the west by South Westmoreland Drive, on the south by West Gore Street, and on the east by Interstate-4.
The Rent Abatement Program can provide qualified new and existing businesses (retail and services) within the Target Area with up to $6,000 in rent assistance for a limited period, from July 7, 2020 to February 1, 2021. Applications close on February 1, 2021 at 5 pm EST.
To learn more about eligibility and to apply, click here.
Expand Operational Space and Marketing
In an effort to help expedite a path to economic recovery and to further assist local businesses, the City of Orlando is providing opportunities for businesses to temporarily expand their operational space and market their businesses outside, without the need to obtain city permits or pay any fees.
These opportunities include:
- Allowing businesses to expand retail sales and restaurant seating into outdoor areas such as private parking lots and public rights-of-way
- Authorizing businesses to use small, farmer’s market-style 12’ x 12’ tents to accommodate for sales and seating outdoors • Granting businesses the ability to use extra banners and signage for marketing
- Covering the costs of downtown parking to encourage residents to patronize businesses within our urban core
All programs will be available to businesses until February 1, 2021.
Coronavirus COVID-19 Update
For updated information on coronavirus/COVID-19, visit Orlando.gov/covid19