A grant program to encourage neon signs along Tulsa’s stretch of Route 66 is proving so popular, the commission funding them is clarifying how many grants people can apply for.
Tulsa Route 66 Commission member Amanda De Cort said with a business owner recently asking whether they can apply for multiple grants for multiple signs at one location, they’re instituting a policy.
"You get one sign at a time, and if your sign grant application is accepted and funded, then you are welcome to apply for an additional sign one calendar year later," DeCort said.
Grants up to $10,000 are available for new or refurbished signs along Route 66, including within the Inner Dispersal Loop.
"We want to have as many unique businesses with neon signs as possible all up and down Route 66," DeCort said.
The commission is also putting an additional $60,000 into the neon sign grant program. That’s coming from $130,000 in funding carried over from last fiscal year that can be reallocated.
The funding is on top of $40,000 already budgeted for neon grants. Commission member Ken Busby said that should cover all current and pending applications, meaning as many as nine new neon signs lit up in the next year.
"With nine or 10, you’ve got now — with what’s already there historically — you’ve got enough for people to really, actually see something and enjoy, and take a little bit of a neon cruise through Tulsa," Busby said.
The first grant-funded sign was turned on at Billy Ray’s BBQ & Catfish last week.