Governor Corbett announced Thursday that the City of Erie will receive funding for downtown improvements.

The $425,000 grant is coming at the perfect time.

John Buchna of the Erie Downtown Partnership said the master plan is about 6 years old.  A lot of improvements have been made to the downtown area, since then.

"We're at that point where we updated the market analysis itself and we aligned the funding, which in part came from the state.  It will take about a year to plan out what the downtown will look, function and feel like for the next 5 years," said Buchna.

Governor Corbett said Thursday morning, "Every city is the heart of our region. The partnership with erie will help revive the city's downtown and attract new growth throughout the northwest."

The Department of Community and Economic Development has awarded the City of Erie three separate grants.

The keystone communities program includes a $50,000 facade grant; businesses such as Calamari's and The Brewerie at Union Station have already taken advantage of the facade grant.

$25 ,000 will go towards planning.  $350,000 will go towards operational and residential reinvestment.

"This is just great news.  I mean, this is news we've been waiting for, for quite a few months," said Buchna.  We're very pleased.  But it allows us, again, to do our part, to work with the others in the community making it better for all."

We'll keep you up to date on any new announcements from Harrisburg in the coming months.