Empire State Development, in collaboration with NYS Homes and Community Renewal and University at Buffalo Regional Institute, will offer technical assistance to prepare organizations interested in developing a Main Street program in their communities for the next Better Buffalo Fund round (projected for fall 2015).
The $30 million Better Buffalo Fund is a program under the "Buffalo Billion" initiative to foster the transformation of the city's physical environment to facilitate economic development and job growth. A total of $11,722,500 was awarded to 21 projects April 24 in the first round.
As part of the Better Buffalo Fund, applicants could apply for Buffalo Main Streets Initiative funding. A program modeled on the New York State Main Street program, the Buffalo Main Streets Initiative assists in the revitalization of mixed-use neighborhood commercial districts. Funds could be used for building renovations and public space enhancements in discrete, mixed-use target areas, with direct coordination from the local, nonprofit, community-based organization/business association along identified city corridors.
ESD and its partners are offering technical assistance to ensure more communities have the tools to complete a quality grant application and successfully implement a Main Street program in the future. With the approach of the second round of BBF funding later this year, communities approved for technical assistance will receive a consultant provided by ESD at no charge to the community. This person will assist with both building organizational capacity and assessing building conditions, housing potential and market opportunities.
The following organizations are eligible to apply for technical assistance:
•Not-for-profit organizations located in the City of Buffalo. Religious, government/municipal organizations and organizations not formally incorporated will not be considered.
•The applicant organization has never received funding under the state Main Street program nor received funding under the first round of Better Buffalo Fund.
•A business district to receive technical assistance must fall within the Better Buffalo Fund Main Street targeted commercial corridors
The deadline to apply for technical assistance is July 3. To apply and see map of a qualified area, click here.
To continue the revitalization of Buffalo's neighborhoods and main streets, the next round of Better Buffalo Fund funding will take place later this year. 2014 program guidelines are available here.