Creative Economy Pilot Project

The Creative Economy Pilot Project is an initiative by the City of Sacramento to increase economic activity and improve public spaces through art, food, and technology initiatives. The City is offering $500,000 in microgrants up to $5,000 and larger grants up to $25,000 to support projects such as pop-up events, art installations, and street performances in Sacramento’s neighborhoods. Applications are due July 30, 2017.

Prospective applicants are advised to review the Creative Economy Pilot Project Grant Guidelines in their entirety before starting an application.

The types of projects the City envisions will be funded under the program include those that focus on: public art/installations, performing arts/music, Farm-to-Fork, urban tech, pop-ups, temporary activations, multi-purpose spaces, marketing/communications, youth/education, cultural equity, and underserved communities. However, applicants may propose any type of project that fits within the overall vision of the program. A review panel will competitively recommend projects for funding based upon each proposal’s potential impact, geographic need, and applicant capability.

Through the Pilot Project, the City is interested in catalyzing entrepreneurial initiatives that improve the quality and experiences of public spaces that have not been activated to their full potential. While creative placemaking has been visible in areas within the Central City, the opportunity exists to replicate this same energy and excitement beyond the Downtown/Midtown core. By providing financial support for these projects, the City will be able to capture key metrics, such as increased pedestrian and/or economic activity in areas where these projects are deployed.

The timing of the Pilot Project coincides with the City’s efforts to develop an integrated, place- based community revitalization and economic development plan. We expect arts and culture to play a significant role in any holistic approach that considers neighborhood-based assets, needs, and priorities. To that end, the Pilot Project funding allocation formula ensures that a minimum level of investment is made in each Council district through the program.

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We received nearly 500 Creative Economy applications.
Here’s what we’re learning.