Juliana Vasquez-Keating
Public Information Officer
O: 602.322.4492
C: 520.990.5797

For immediate release

April 1, 2024

Additional grant funding available for businesses along light rail construction
More than $1M and 200+ grants distributed to small businesses in first three years of program

PHOENIX— After three successful years, the Small Business Financial Assistance Program (SBFAP) will enter its final year on April 1, providing support to small, locally-owned businesses along our South Central Extension/Downtown Hub light rail project. New this year, eligible businesses can apply for between $4,500 (up from $3,000 in past years) to $9,000 in program funding.

Since launching in 2021, SBFAP has distributed more than $1M in grant funding to more than 200 small and micro businesses immediately adjacent to light rail construction in Phoenix. Last year alone, the program granted more than $370,000 to 70 businesses located along two separate light rail construction routes.

“The grant was very helpful to our business. It helped pay our bills, including rent. Everyone should apply,” said David Herrera, owner, Comedor y Panadería La Tapatía.

“The program has made a profound difference in my life and my business,” said Cerrone Burton, Owner, Gallery Hair Experience. “I am proud to say that, despite the challenges, the Gallery Hair Experience is not only still standing but thriving.”

As the pilot program enters its fourth and final year, new applicants and those who received funding previously are encouraged to apply. The program aims to assist businesses with 15 or fewer employees located along the South Central Extension/Downtown Hub construction corridor whose annual revenue does not exceed $750,000. To view all eligibility requirements and apply, visit

The SBFAP is a program Valley Metro and the city of Phoenix created, with significant community feedback and financial backing from Phoenix Transportation 2050 (T2050) and the Phoenix Community Development & Investment Corporation (PCDIC).

In addition to the SBFAP, Valley Metro offers a number of free business assistance programs including business consulting, hosting community events, marketing assistance and signage. To date, more than 460 businesses have participated in one or more elements of these business programs.

About Valley Metro: Located in the fastest-growing county in the U.S., Valley Metro connects people to their most important destinations each day. Riders travel across the metro-Phoenix area on eco-friendly public transit including bus, light rail, paratransit and streetcar. Progress continues on additional high-capacity transit extensions that are either in planning or under construction to create a 50-mile rail system by 2030. Valley Metro also offers alternative transportation programs including paratransit services for seniors and people with disabilities, commuter vanpools, online carpool matching, bus trip mapping, bicycle safety and telework assistance. Two Boards of Directors from 19 local cities and towns and the county set the policy direction for the agency with the intent of advancing the regional public transit system in Maricopa County. In addition to federal and local funds, Valley Metro receives critical capital and bus operations funds from Prop. 400, the 20-year, regional half-cent transportation sales tax that is set to expire in 2025. Stay up-to-date by following us on  Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and X  or by visiting and downloading the Valley Metro app.

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