Nature in Neighborhood’s community choice grants give community members like you a chance to be part of every step of the process: from imagining new parks and nature projects to designing the concept to voting for your favorite projects.
What projects can be funded
The simplest way to describe eligible projects is they have to result in a physical thing that can be owned by a local government, like a city or park district. A few examples are a park or a culvert under a road or a nature playground or a piece of property. These are often called capital assets.
The grants can’t be used for projects like nature education classes or swim lessons or small restoration efforts. However, Nature in Neighborhoods does have grants for those types of projects.
These limits are set by state law and promises Metro made to the community when voters passed the 2019 parks and nature bond measure.
How much can a project get?
Community choice grants can help fund projects like these with budgets from $10,000 up to $250,000. Metro will award up to $2 million in total.
Why just District 4?
Simply, this is a pilot for a new type of grant program and keeping the geographic area small is a fiscally responsible way to test this new approach. A goal of the program is to build relationships between local governments and communities that have often been ignored or harmed by governments. To do that, Metro is committing staff time to meaningfully engage with communities of color, Indigenous community members, folks with low incomes, among other communities. From past projects, Metro has found this relationship-building is done best when it focuses on reaching communities in specific places and working on projects in their neighborhoods.