2022 grant cycle is open
Metro’s second round of Equitable Development pilot projects are intended to inform, advance and facilitate future work in support of the Equitable Development Strategy while sustaining or enhancing community-driven initiatives that prepare communities for the changes and opportunities light rail and other investments would bring to the Southwest Corridor.
Up to $550,000 is available for the 2022 grant cycle with awards ranging from $35,000 to $150,000. The grants support a mix of projects that have a focus on business and workforce development needs. Grant-funded activities must take place within the Southwest Corridor eligible geographic area.
- July 8: Applications open
- Aug. 5: Letters of Intent due
- Sept. 7: Applications due
- Oct-Nov 2022: Grant-funded activities may begin
- December 2023 : Activities should be complete
Letters of Intent and final applications should be delivered to Metro’s grant project manager Brian Harper at [email protected].
Improved access to transit is often a great benefit to the surrounding neighborhoods. When new infrastructure such as light rail comes in, property values rise. This benefits some people, but rents and other housing costs also increase, hurting other members of the community. Many are pushed out and displaced; small businesses close; the character of the neighborhood is irreparably altered. The Southwest Corridor Equitable Development Strategy resulted from an effort in 2017 to prevent these negative impacts from happening in Southwest Portland, Tigard and Tualatin with future light rail expansion. See the Southwest Corridor Plan page to learn more about plans for future light rail.
Thanks to a Federal Transit Administration grant, Metro worked with partners from the community to explore how a proposed light rail and other investments in the Southwest Corridor could support community development and improve the quality of life for people of all incomes and backgrounds. This process built relationships among government and community members, employers, affordable housing providers, business leaders, philanthropic organizations and educational institutions. It also tested several new solutions with help from the grant.
The Southwest Corridor Equitable Development Strategy established several goals for Southwest Corridor communities:
- Empower people affected by the light rail expansion to determine the community’s needs.
- Ensure people affected by a light rail expansion are able to stay in the community and have opportunities to thrive.
- Preserve and expand affordable housing.
- Create new economic opportunities for neighbors and local business owners that generate new wealth in the community.
- Prevent the displacement of neighbors and local businesses.
- Improve transit options for people to get where they need to go.
- Develop healthy and safe communities.
Southwest Corridor Equity Coalition
The Southwest Corridor Equitable Development Strategy is an innovative tool to create more equitable outcomes as greater Portland planned to extend light rail. Metro staff envisioned a new group, the Southwest Equity Coalition, to continue carrying out the strategy. The coalition would work to prepare current residents of the Southwest Corridor for the economic impact of the new light rail line. Metro wants to ensure that existing residents are able to stay and experience the opportunities that a major public investment will bring.
The Southwest Corridor Equity Coalition is a coordinated effort between community organizations, residents, businesses, philanthropic partners, and state and local government bodies to advocate for and to resource equitable development practices in the Southwest Corridor.
Read more about the Southwest Corridor Equity Coalition