Placemaking Program & GrantA

Placemaking is a way to make your community a better place to live by transforming unused sites and “eyesores” into welcoming destinations accessible to everyone in a community. Placemaking can be undertaken by anyone in a community but what is often needed is someone to take the lead or initiative. Who better to do this than a REALTOR® Association, and its members, as REALTORS® are already engaged in their communities and know the neighborhoods and the properties, and are likely to know where to focus efforts to enhance a place.

Placemaking Program Resources

The REALTOR® Party’s Placemaking program provides technical and financial assistance to help REALTOR® Associations become engaged in placemaking in their communities. Available resources include the:

  • Placemaking Guide for REALTOR® Associations
    Learn the details of Placemaking; the kinds of projects Placemaking entails and how to organize them; and where to go for assistance and resources.
  • Spaces to Places Blog
    See and learn about Placemaking projects in action across the country.
  • Placemaking Webinars
    The Placemaking Webinars provide more in-depth information on the various types of Placemaking and how REALTORS® are involved in Placemaking activities in their communities.
  • Better Block Guide for Associations
    A detailed overview of what a Better Block is and information to help you and your partners plan and organize a Better Block. Ideas generated at a Better Block may lead to permanent Placemaking projects.
  • Smart Growth Action Grant
    Fund planning and community input activities related to Placemaking and land-use policies, such as Better Block events, Placemaking visioning and Main Street® analyses.

Questions? Contact Holly Moskerintz at 202-383-1157.

Placemaking Grant

The Placemaking Grant funds the creation of new, outdoor public spaces and destinations in a community.

The Placemaking grant is only available to state and local REALTOR® Associations.

New this year will be a Level 1 grant to fund demonstration and temporary projects. An association can be approved for one Level 1 and one Level 2 Placemaking grant per year.

Review the criteria below for each grant level before applying for a Placemaking Grant. You may want to call Holly Moskerintz at 202-383-1157 before applying for a grant to discuss your project idea and see if your project meets the criteria.

Level 1

PLACEMAKING GRANT LEVEL 1 APPLICATION

The Level 1 Placemaking grant funds demonstration and temporary projects to provide an opportunity to test the viability of long-range plans and investment initiatives that increase community livability and downtown revitalization. The intent is that these types of projects will lead to permanent projects.

Resource: Tactical Urbanist’s Guide: provides materials and design guidance for Tactical Urbanism projects that advance street safety and enhance placemaking efforts in both the short- and long-term.

  • Amount: up to $1,500 depending on engagement of REALTOR® Association, and its members, project impact on community and meeting of all project criteria listed below.
  • REALTOR® Association Contribution: 10% of total amount approved to the project.
  • Review: NAR Staff
  • Number/Year: One
    Note that if a project was approved for funding this year, in order to apply for a grant next year, the project needs to be completed.
  • Project Criteria: The Placemaking Grant can only be used to fund projects that meet the following criteria:
    • Types of Projects Funded: Parklets, pop-up parks, pedestrian plazas, bike lanes. See: Pop-ups before Permanent Spaces
    • Association and Member Engagement: Placemaking projects offer an opportunity for REALTOR® Associations and REALTORS® to engage in community outreach and set the stage for advocacy efforts. An association, and its members, need to be involved in the planning, designing, funding and/or building of the project.
      • Association-led & managed projects – required to be approved for maximum amount
      • Association engagement: fundraising and/or donations, planning, organizing, Realtor Action Day project, serves on project committee/task force, etc.
      • Realtor engagement: site clean-up, planning, coordinating, serves on project committee/task force, building of project, etc.

Usage of Grant Funds

  • Funds can be used for amenities (street furniture, paint, signage, materials, landscaping, murals, etc.), site preparation, artist fees
  • Funds can’t be used on marketing, food, plaque, opening day activities – can use 10% contribution for these items

Application Process

The online application can be submitted at any time through October 15, 2019.

  • Submit the online application and attachments (site photo)
  • Staff will schedule a brief phone call to discuss project and application
    • You may need to provide additional information
    • You can have your partners on the call
  • Staff will then review the application after all required information is received
  • Staff will contact the association within 5 days after the phone call

Level 2

PLACEMAKING GRANT LEVEL 2 APPLICATION

The Level 2 Placemaking grant funds the creation of new public spaces and destinations in a community accessible to everyone and open at all, or most, times. The Grant focuses on “lighter, cheaper, quicker” placemaking projects, which can be built under a year and cost less than $200,000.

  • Amount: up to $5,000 depending on engagement of REALTOR® Association, and its members, impact on community and meeting of all project criteria listed below.
  • REALTOR® Association Contribution: 10% of total amount approved to the project.
  • Review: Smart Growth Advisory Board
  • Number/Year: One
    Note that if a project was approved for funding this year, in order to apply for a grant next year, the project needs to be completed.
  • Project Criteria: The Placemaking Grant can only be used to fund projects that meet the following criteria:
    • Types of Projects Funded: new parks, pocket parks, plazas, parklets, alley activations, trails, dog parks, play/fitness areas, community gardens.
    • Association and Member Engagement
      Placemaking projects offer an opportunity for REALTOR® Associations and REALTORS® to engage in community outreach and set the stage for advocacy efforts. An association, and its members, need to be involved in the planning, designing, funding and/or building of the project.

      • Maximum grant amount is awarded to reflect projects that are association-led or projects where the REALTOR® Association is a main partner
      • Association engagement: fundraising and/or donations, planning, organizing, Realtor Action Day project, serves on project committee/task force, etc.
      • Realtor engagement: site clean-up, planning, coordinating, serves on project committee/task force, building of project, etc.
    • Multi-Functional & Community-Orientated
      • Benefits everyone in the community (not for targeted groups)
      • Includes several amenities (seating, kiosks, landscaping, artwork, etc.) that everyone can enjoy
      • Compliant with city permitting and zoning
      • Open and accessible all or most of the time (not inside buildings, not behind locked doors/gates)

Usage of Grant Funds

  • Funds can be used for amenities (street furniture, paint, signage, materials, landscaping, murals, etc.), site preparation, artist fees
  • Funds can’t be used on marketing, food, plague, opening day activities – can use 10% contribution for these items

Application Process

Deadlines: The online application can be submitted at any time through October 15, 2019. However, grant applications will only be reviewed once a month. The 15th of each month is the deadline. Applications received before the 15th of each month will be reviewed 2-7 days after that date.

  • Submit the online application and attachments (site photo, budget, design concept plan)
  • Staff will schedule a brief phone call to discuss project and application
    • You may need to provide additional information
    • You can have your partners on the call
  • Members of the Smart Growth Advisory Board (SGAB) will review the application several days after the 15th of each month assuming all required information is received
  • Staff will contact the association within 7 days after the SGAB members reviews the application

Project Completion: Level 1 and Level 2

All projects must be completed within one year of the grant application approval.

Within one month of project completion, the following needs to be completed:

  • Email photo(s) of the completed project to Holly Moskerintz.
  • Submit the evaluation form outlining impact of project (i.e. use/visits by the community; media coverage; other community projects, community response, outcomes, etc.).
  • Optional: Celebrate your success. We encourage you to consider having a “ribbon cutting” ceremony or similar event and inviting members, the community, stakeholders and media.
  • Optional: Write a blog post to be included in the Spaces to Places blog. Posts should be no more than 300 words and should include photos and/or videos.

Disbursement of Funds: Level 1 and Level 2

The request for reimbursement must be made within 1 year from when the application was approved.

Funds will be distributed as follows:

  • Request check request via email to Holly Moskerintz.
    • Include to whom the check should be made out to and a mailing address.
    • Checks can be payable to your association or board, or an organization (we will need the Tax ID number, phone number and copy of their W-9) but not to a government agency.
  • Submit proof of how funds were spent.
    • Acceptable forms of proof include an invoice, signed contract, receipts and cancelled checks.
  • Once all documentation is received, NAR will process the check request. It usually takes 10-15 working days for the check to be processed and mailed.

Questions? Contact Holly Moskerintz at 202-383-1157.