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Start a Business in Uptown

Welcome! If you’re ready to start a business in Uptown, we’re here to help.

Uptown is a great place to locate your business: we’re widely recognized as a thriving, dynamic and eclectic set of four business districts surrounded by diverse, safe and walkable neighborhoods.

We are a welcoming district that values diversity, and mutual trust and respect. We work collaboratively, communicate transparently and openly.

Are You an Established Uptown Business?

Check out our Business Resources for Uptown Businesses.

Find The Right Space for Your Business

If you are a property owner or broker with a property that is available to rent or buy, please submit information here.

Business person looking for an Uptown space to rent or buy? Let us know what you’re in the market for and we’ll share what we know! 

New Business Resources

Ready to plan for your new business? Start with City-level resources. If you haven’t already seen it, the City of Grand Rapids provides an excellent resource for starting and running a business in Grand Rapids.

Additionally, the City of Grand Rapids Economic Development team provides support for entrepreneurs, small businesses looking to grow and companies considering expansion or relocation. You can apply to any of their programs through the Citizen Access Portal and view their schedule for fees for all programs.

Have More Questions?

Reach out directly:

(616) 456-3431

Are you a veteran? Many of the skills you learned in the military can be especially helpful in running a business. Check out this link that offers the best resources and programs geared especially for military veterans who are considering a venture into the world of small business startup.

Building Permits

Once you’ve secured a property, you’ll need a building permit. The City provides step-by-step instructions on securing a commercial building permit.

Sign Permits

You’ll also want a sign to let people know about your business. Like the building permit process, there are step-by-step instructions on how to apply for a sign permit.

Funds and Available Grants

Uptown can help you make connections to local resources and economic development organizations.

Uptown Structure and Support

Uptown helps plan, coordinate and communicate with and between all sectors of the Uptown community and beyond.

Uptown is comprised of a Board of Directors, providing planning and coordinating services with the Business Improvement District and Corridor Improvement Authority boards. We can help direct you to resources and make connections with individual districts.

Request your Uptown Welcome Packet!

Everything you need to get plugged into your Uptown community… contact information, critical links, how to get involved, support information for your and your customers.

Sign Up for Our Business Directory