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URA Announces Neighborhood Initiatives Fund Projects Ready to Move Forward

Press Release
February 4, 2020

PITTSBURGH, PA (February 4, 2020) – The Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh (URA) announced today the Neighborhood Initiatives Fund (NIF) projects are ready to move forward. The NIF Program is a pilot program that makes it easier for City of Pittsburgh communities to access funding for neighborhood-scale projects. A total of 18 NIF awards were granted across 30 neighborhoods throughout the City for a total investment of $850,000.

The grant recipients, funding awarded, and projects are:

Pittsburgh Musical Theater $94,360 Pittsburgh Musical Theater's historic building
Brookline Together $19,995 Brookline community apiary and garden infrastructure
Bloomfield Development Corporation $20,000 Bloomfield streetscape improvements
Grow Pittsburgh $18,000 East Commons Community Garden at Allegheny Commons Park 
The Union Project $78,000 Union Project front plaza and stairs
Manchester Citizens Corporation $50,000 Juniata Street Green Project
ACH Clear Pathways $80,000 ACH Clear Pathways Arts Center
Western Pennsylvania Conservancy $15,694 Western Pennsylvania Conservancy Community Gardens update
Northside Leadership Conference $5,000 We Like Bikes! Bicycle rack expansion
Hazelwood Initiative, Inc. $100,000 A Gateway to Hazelwood’s Future
Northside Partnership Project $100,000 McNaugher School heating upgrade
Mount Washington Community Development Corporation $20,000 Wyoming/Virginia/Southern Intersection Redevelopment Planning Project    
Elizabeth Seton Center, Inc. $83,333 Elizabeth Seton Center roof replacement
Project Love Coalition $15,800 Agri-Green Space and Learning Garden
Point Breeze North Development Corporation $20,000 Westinghouse Park planning
Bible Center Church - Oasis Community Kitchen $100,000 Oasis Community Kitchen Improvements
Landforce $19,818 South Side Park Accessible Trail Loop  
Nine Mile Run Watershed Association $10,000 Rosedale/Hill Neighborhood Gateway Improvements


“The NIF Program is a great example of how the URA supports nonprofit and community-based organizations by increasing project visibility and access to funding,” Diamonte Walker, URA deputy executive director said. “Leveraging local dollars to invest in these neighborhood-scale initiatives is intended to improve residents' quality of life and underscore the amazing work happening within our communities across the City of Pittsburgh.”

The program, administered by the URA’s Economic Development Department, is designed to help unlock the economic and placemaking potential within neighborhoods citywide. It grants up to $100,000 to nonprofits and community-based organizations for eligible non-housing, neighborhood projects including, but not limited to:

  • Vacant property reclamation and stewardship
  • Historic preservation
  • Brownfield development
  • Construction of public space and neighborhood infrastructure improvements, such as streetscape improvements, transit and transportation-related improvements, parks and open space improvements, green infrastructure, and public art

There are two levels of funding available: Tier 1 includes grants under $20,000 with no matching requirements; and Tier 2 includes grants between $20,000 to $100,000 with matching funds required from non-URA and non-City sources.

“We here at the Manchester Citizens Corp (MCC) are thrilled to be a recipient of the NIF program funding,” MCC CEO LaShawn Burton-Faulk said. “We are in a season where placemaking that is equitable and transforming matters. In a majority minority community that has an adopted community comprehensive plan, it is wonderful to know that partners like the URA have prioritized economic development activity and are providing resources for those types of activity to truly be executed!”

The URA Board of Directors approved the NIF Program guidelines in July 2019. Since then, information sessions were held in August; applications were due October 1, followed by an extensive review process; awards were announced in mid-November; and a series of webinars outlining next steps were held in December and January.

Currently, URA project managers are holding scope discussions with grantees. Work is anticipated to begin in the spring.

The program guidelines, applications and funding schedule can be found here. For additional information, please contact the URA’s Economic Development Department at 412.255.6560.

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