Project Description

The 2024 Neighborhood Improvement Grant Program (the “Program”) has been revised to expand and enhance engagement, equities, and outcomes for participating neighborhood associations (each, an “Association”). Revisions to the Program include:

Program Revisions

Direct Payment of Funds –Grant funds will be paid directly to contractors and vendors contracted to provide labor and materials for a grant-funded neighborhood project (each, a “Project”) in lieu of reimbursing the Association for the payment of Project costs, unless the neighborhood requests reimbursement.

Neighborhood Engagement – A submitted application (each, an “Application”) must include appropriate evidence of neighborhood engagement in selecting and supporting a Project.

Allocation of Grant Awards – Applications submitted by Associations not previously awarded grant funding for a Project will receive additional consideration in order to expand the reach of the Program. However, previous grant recipients are also encouraged to submit new Applications.

Location of Neighborhoods – Only Associations whose neighborhoods are located entirely within the City of Fort Wayne may submit Applications unless the Neighborhood Grants Manager waives the location requirement upon request of an Association.

Application Scores – Completion of each Section of the Application is required. Because of the considerable demand for grant funds, a comprehensive response to each Section is necessary. The maximum available points for the response to each Section have been adjusted to encourage the preparation and submission of a comprehensive and original Application.

The Program is designed to energize and improve the City’s neighborhoods by inviting eligible Associations to apply for a neighborhood improvement grant (each, a “Program Grant”) in the maximum amount of $5,000 to fund a Project located in the Association’s neighborhood (“Neighborhood”). In order to be considered for a Program Grant, the Project must fit within one (1) of the following categories: (1) Placemaking, (2) Transit Oriented Improvements, (3) Landscaping, and (4) Neighborhood Identification/Branding. Routine maintenance projects are not eligible for Program Grant funding.

Project Examples

Improvement above made by Maplewood Community(2023) in the new Sheldon Park.

  • Placemaking – park improvements/enhancements, playground equipment, vacant lot adoption/clean up, dog park equipment, benches, water fountains, pergolas/pavilions, and basketball court improvements.

Transit Oriented Improvements – transit stop beautification/benches, waste/recycling receptacles at transit stops, speed limit signage, and path and or trail improvements.

The improvement above was made by Harvester Neighborhood (2023) to add crosswalks in their neighborhood from Adams Elementary to McCormick Park

Landscaping – community gardens, butterfly gardens, tree planting, native plants, rain gardens, hanging flower baskets, and decorative planters.

Neighborhood Identification/Branding – murals, decorative signal cabinets, birdhouses, neighborhood communication kiosks, outdoor lighting, historic district signage and plaques, beautification microgrants, house number signs, and neighborhood history/landmark signage.

The award of a program grant is conditioned upon the review, unconditional approval, and, if applicable, permitting of the project by all municipal departments and divisions and private sector entities having jurisdiction over the project. For example, a public art project must be reviewed and approved by the public art commission, a transportation improvement project must be reviewed and approved by the department of public works, and a transit-related project requires an agreement between the association and citilink.

Grant Application