The Our Town grant program supports creative placemaking projects that help to transform communities into lively, beautiful, and resilient places – achieving these community goals through strategies that incorporate arts, culture, and/or design. Creative placemaking is when artists, arts organizations, and community development practitioners deliberately integrate arts and culture into community revitalization work - placing arts at the table with land-use, transportation, economic development, education, housing, infrastructure, and public safety strategies. This funding supports local efforts to enhance quality of life and opportunity for existing residents, increase creative activity, and create or preserve a distinct sense of place.
Through Our Town, subject to the availability of funding, the National Endowment for the Arts will provide a limited number of grants for creative placemaking. Our Town requires partnerships between arts organizations and government, other nonprofit organizations, and private entities to achieve livability goals for communities.
Our Town offers support for projects in two areas:
Arts Engagement, Cultural Planning, and Design Projects. These projects represent the distinct character and quality of their communities. These projects require a partnership between a nonprofit organization and a local government entity, with one of the partners being a cultural organization. Matching grants range from $25,000 to $200,000.
Projects that Build Knowledge About Creative Placemaking. These projects are available to arts and design service organizations, and industry, policy, or university organizations that provide technical assistance to those doing place-based work. Matching grants range from $25,000 to $100,000.
Through Our Town projects, the National Endowment for the Arts intends to achieve the following objective: Livability: American communities are strengthened through the arts. See "Livability" for more details.