Community enhancement grants improve economic opportunities, neighborhood livability, public safety and more in areas near Metro’s garbage disposal facilities. Since 1985, Metro has invested more than $5 million in four communities across the Portland metropolitan area: Forest Grove, Oregon City, North Portland and Northwest Portland.
To be considered, projects must do at least one of the following:
- increase employment and economic opportunities
- rehabilitate and upgrade residential housing
- preserve wildlife, marine and recreational areas for public enjoyment
- improve public safety
- enhance neighborhood appearance or cleanliness
- improve viability of commercial areas and enhance the business environment
- provide programs and training opportunities to benefit youth and elderly
- improve neighborhood livability
Who is eligible
Nonprofits can apply for the grants. In recent years, successful applicants have included neighborhood, conservation, health and education organizations.
Successful grant projects include:
- developing environmental education projects for at-risk youth
- removing ivy and restoring habitat in Forest Park
- installing fire escapes at senior centers
- producing summer concert programs in local parks
- planting trees around community parks and main street boulevards in industrial areas
Target areas and grant cycles
In each of four enhancement grant target areas, a committee of local residents promote, solicit, select and evaluate projects.
Funded by a surcharge on waste at the Metro Central Transfer Station, located off of Highway 30 in Northwest Portland, Metro Central Enhancement Grants benefit the neighborhoods of Forest Park, Cathedral Park and Linnton; the Northwest District Association, the Northwest Industrial Area and an area directly adjacent to the St. Johns Bridge.
Apply in fall 2014 for 2015 grants. To be added to the mailing list, contact Heather Nelson Kent at 503-797-1739 or email@example.com
Metro North Enhancement Grants (North Portland)
For nearly three decades, North Portland community enhancement grants helped improve neighborhoods near the now-closed St. Johns Landfill. In 2013, the Metro Council unanimously approved the grant committee’s recommendation to distribute the remaining $1.6 million. The committee decided to support the North Portland Greenway trail and award one final round of grants, focused on building recipients’ capacity to serve North Portland residents for the long-term. No further grants are available.
Metro South Enhancement Grants (Oregon City)
Communities near the Metro South Station in Oregon City benefit from annual community enhancement grants. Awards are made by a local citizens' advisory committee, which includes the Oregon City Commission, four citizens appointed by the mayor and the Metro Councilor representing District 2. Applications are due each spring. For details, visit the city’s grants webpage.
Forest Grove Enhancement Grants
The Forest Grove City Council awards about $50,000 each spring to projects that serve city residents. Metro Councilor Kathryn Harrington, District 4, acts as an adviser. For more information, review the city’s grants packet or call Paul Downey, Forest Grove administrative services director, at 503-992-3200.