Grant program launched for Hamilton residents who want to reimagine city spaces


Published January 29, 2021 at 1:02 pm

The City of Hamilton has launched its Placemaking Grant Pilot Program that invites residents to reimagine the spaces in their neighbourhoods and beyond.

Placemaking is a community-led attempt to reimagine and animate public, underused spaces to attract people to these areas.

It is felt that community-led projects like this provide “a way for residents to feel ownership of public space and use it in a way that is specific to community need,” a press release issued by the city on Friday (Jan. 29) said.

As the community recovers from the pandemic, placemaking projects can also re-enliven some of the city’s underused spaces and give residents a safe destination to enjoy the city.

In July 2020, Hamilton’s General Issues Committee welcomed a presentation on the pilot from the city’s director of Tourism and Culture, Carrie Brooks-Joiner, who said at the time that projects would have to adhere to COVID-19 protocols.

The entire pilot is funded by through a $100,000 donation from the Patrick J. McNally Charitable Foundation — the same organization that helped save Hamilton’s bike-share service with another $100,000 donation in late May 2020.

Projects funded through the Placemaking Grant Pilot Program are expected to start in the summer of 2021 through 2023 and applications will be accepted from groups of residents and non-profit organizations.

Applicants can apply for funding at two levels:

  • Category 1 – Up to $2,000 per project. Projects are temporary (from a few days up to one year) and may include a physical change to the place (signage, sculpture, garden planters, etc.) or may reimagine a space through repeated action (performances, gatherings, etc.).
  • Category 2 – $5,000 to $20,000. Projects are temporary (from a few days up to three years) and will include a physical change to the place (seating, sculpture, etc.).

It is expected that the Placemaking Grant Pilot Program will award approximately 24 grants over the 2-year pilot period (approximately 20 grants in Category 1 and 2-4 grants in Category 2).

Applications for funding are due by 4:30 p.m. on Friday, April 9, 2021. Residents and community groups that miss the April 2021 deadline will have a second opportunity to apply for funding in the fall of 2021.

Residents and groups who want to learn more about placemaking and the Placemaking Grant Pilot Program are encouraged to register for one of two virtual information sessions:

  • Wednesday, February 10, 2021 at 1 p.m.
  • Tuesday, March 9, 2021 at 7 p.m.

For more information about the project and how you might be able to get involved, visit the city’s website.

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