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Neighborhood Opportunity Fund (NOF) Grant

Grants to Illinois Businesses, Nonprofits, and Property Owners
in Eligible Locations for Community Development Activities

Agency Type:

Local

Funding Source:

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City of Chicago Department of Planning and Development

Conf. Date:

03/15/21

Deadline Date:

04/16/21

Description:

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Grants to Illinois businesses, nonprofit organizations, and property owners in eligible locations for community development activities. Funding is intended to benefit underserved neighborhoods. Grant funds may be used for the construction or rehabilitation of real estate, as well as projects that support new or expanding businesses or cultural assets. The Neighborhood Opportunity Fund finances projects in commercial corridors across Chicago's South, Southwest, and West Sides.

The Neighborhood Opportunity Fund (NOF) awards grants to projects that have a catalytic impact on the neighborhood and lead to the construction or rehabilitation of new and existing, publicly accessible, commercial spaces (e.g. grocery stores, retail establishments, or restaurants) or cultural establishments. 

Grant funds can be used to reimburse the following costs associated with the construction or rehabilitation of buildings:

  • Land acquisition and assembly
  • Building acquisition, demolition and environmental remediation
  • Security measures
  • Roofing, façade repair and mechanical system repairs
  • Architectural and engineering fees
  • Financing fees (related to securing a loan or other capital)
  • Minor site improvements, such as fencing or planters, when a part of an eligible project
  • Other soft costs associated with eligible hard costs

NOF aims to develop sustainable neighborhood growth by building community-based wealth. Supporting locally-based business and property owners will ensure that investments in the neighborhoods remain in those neighborhoods, helping to catalyze new businesses and new employment opportunities. The Build Community Wealth Bonuses provide eligible projects with additional funds, to advance this goal. If eligible, projects may receive either or both Build Community Wealth Bonuses.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 185158

Estimated Size of Grant:

NOF offers two types of grants: Small Projects (assistance of $250,000 or less), and Large Projects (assistance of more than $250,000). The NOF assistance available to your project depends on its location.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Business and property owners may apply for grant funding.

Non-profit organizations are eligible for the NOF grant, but they must be engaged in a retail or commercial activity or providing a cultural asset that is open to the public.

NOF does not award grants for the construction or rehabilitation of residential uses, manufacturing uses, industrial uses, social services (including daycare and elder care), or places of worship that do not identify commercial as the primary use of a project.

Grant funds CANNOT be used to reimburse the following costs associated with the construction or rehabilitation of buildings:
- Residential dwelling units or the residential portion of a mixed-use building
- Minor repairs and improvements, such as painting
- Repairs or improvements that are required to bring a building into compliance with the City of Chicago’s Building Code
- Support programs or services
- Operating expenses
- Travel expenses or any lodging/hotel expenses
- Applicants cannot be reimbursed for any work completed on their project prior to receiving a conditional award letter, nor can grants be retroactively awarded for projects completed outside of the formal grant process.

Pre-proposal Conference:

Upcoming Sessions:
Thursday, March 11, 10:00am (Spanish)
- Registration link: https://cityofchicago-org.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_awbEbPT6TZK6SIgZQyDhAQ
- Co-presented by Little Village Chamber of Commerce and NOF Staff

Monday, March 15, 10:30am (English)
- Registration link: https://cityofchicago-org.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_iYqH5WeiSXenheM71ZuI_w
- Presented by City of Chicago and SomerCor

Pre-Application Information:

The deadline for NOF Small Grants is Friday, April 16th.

NOF is a funding partnership, which means that the City provides a grant of funds for a percentage of the total project costs, and the applicant provides the remaining funds to reach 100% of total project costs. For more information, see the guidelines at the link below.

Recorded Info Sessions
- NOF Info Session (Spanish): https://youtu.be/v7YRdvAfZyg
- NOF Info Session (English): https://youtu.be/thMSF1RRmTw

Guidelines:
https://nof.datamade.us/about/#/who-we-fund

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Please start your application for NOF Small Grants here.
- English: https://neighborhoodopportunityfund.com/eligibility/
- Español: https://neighborhoodopportunityfund.com/es/eligibility/

For questions about the NOF Small Grants program, please email nof@cityofchicago.org.

For questions about the NOF Large Grants program, please email nof-large@cityofchicago.org

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Illinois: Chicago: South, Southwest, and West Sides

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