Community enhancement grants improve economic opportunities, neighborhood livability, public safety and more in areas near the region's garbage transfer facilities.
In fiscal year 2020-21, the Community Enhancement Program funded 92 projects throughout the region. Learn more about these projects and their community impact in our annual report.
Since 1986, Metro has invested more than $6 million in communities across the Portland metropolitan area. Local jurisdictions and community partners help Metro to administer the grant funds in and around Forest Grove, Gresham, Portland, Oregon City, Sherwood, Troutdale and Wilsonville. These funds come from fees collected at local waste transfer stations that are reinvested back into surrounding communities.
The program supports projects that advance one or more of the following goals:
- Provide programs, training or services that benefit underserved populations
- Increase reuse and recycling opportunities
- Improve the environmental quality of the area
- Preserve or improve natural and recreation areas; increase public access
- Rehabilitate and upgrade property owned or operated by non-profits
- Improve the safety, appearance or cleanliness of neighborhoods.
Who is eligible
Nonprofit organizations, schools or local governments can apply for the grants. In recent years, successful applicants have included neighborhood, environmental, social justice and education organizations.
Successful grant projects include:
- Developing environmental education and job training opportunities for underserved youth
- Habitat restoration in parks and natural areas; increased programming to improve access
- Property improvements at community centers and social service hubs
- Producing community events such as festivals, cultural events and summer concert programs
- Safety, cleanup and beautification projects around communities and main street boulevards
- Supporting farmers markets and increasing access to healthy food for underserved communities.
Target areas and grant cycles
Each of the eight enhancement grant programs award funds in a different geographical target area. Grant review committees of local elected officials and residents promote, solicit, evaluate and select funded projects each cycle. Below is information on how to connect with each regional grant program and learn more about their target areas and grant cycle timelines.
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. The program awards about $300,000 a year and is funded by a surcharge on waste at the Metro Central transfer station, located off of Highway 30 in Northwest Portland. Applications are accepted each summer. District 5 Metro Councilor Mary Nolan serves on the committee.
Applications for the 2022 grants are now closed. Stay tuned for our 2023 application period opening July 1, 2022. For details, visit the Metro Central Enhancement grants webpage. To be added to the mailing list, contact Noelle Dobson, Metro's Communty Enhancement Grant Program Manager, at [email protected]
The Oregon City Community Enhancement Committee awards about $250,000 a year each winter to projects in the community. The grant program is funded by community enhancement fees collected at the Metro South transfer station. District 2 Metro Councilor Christine Lewis serves on the committee. For details visit the city’s grants webpage or email Anne Griffin with Oregon City’s Community Grant Program, [email protected].
The Forest Grove Community Enhancement Committee awards about $100,000 each spring to projects that serve city residents. The grant program is funded by community enhancement fees collected at Forest Grove Transfer Station. District 4 Metro Councilor Juan Carlos González serves on the committee. For more information, review the city’s grants webpage or contact the Forest Grove program coordinator Rebeka Andrade at [email protected].
The Gresham Community Enhancement Committee awards about $40,000 each winter to projects that serve city residents. The grant program is funded by community enhancement fees collected at Gresham Sanitary Service facility. District 1 Metro Councilor Shirley Craddick serves on the committee. For more information, review the city’s grants webpage, or contact Michael Gonzales at 503-618-2482 or [email protected]
The Metro North Vanport Legacy Community Enhancement Program awarded more than $151,000 over four years to support programs and projects that build community for all North Portlanders. There will be no funding cycle in 2022. Starting July 2022, Metro will be working with local stakeholders and District 5 Metro Councilor Mary Nolan to identify new partners to support Metro in administering this program in the future. The grant program is funded by community enhancement fees collected at the Recology Suttle Road transfer station. Contact Noelle Dobson with any questions, [email protected].
The Sherwood Community Enhancement Committee awards about $90,000 each spring to projects that serve city residents. The grant program is funded by community enhancement fees collected at Pride Recycling Company. District 3 Metro Councilor Gerritt Rosenthal serves on the committee. For more information, review the city’s grants webpage or contact Leslie Dean, Sherwood city accountant, at 503-625-4212 or [email protected].
The Troutdale Community Enhancement Program closed in 2020 after five years of awarding funds to homeowner associations, city advisory committees, service clubs, schools, and other community non-profit groups. District 1 Metro Councilor Shirley Craddick and Metro staff will work with local stakeholders to reestablish a Troutdale Community Enhancement Program by 2023. Contact Noelle Dobson with any questions, [email protected].
The Wilsonville community enhancement committee awards about $70,000 each winter to projects that serve city residents. District 3 Metro Councilor Gerritt Rosenthal acts as an adviser. For more information, review the city’s grants webpage or call Zoe Monahan at 503-570-1503.