Mayor's Office Press Release

Mayor Sylvester Turner Invites Proposals for National Creative Placemaking Grant

Contemporary Arts Museum Sculpture

Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, in partnership with Houston Freedmen’s Town Conservancy, is a recipient of this year’s Our Town grant sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts. Photo by Rick Gardner.

June 10, 2022 -- Mayor Sylvester Turner is calling for Houston's best ideas to endorse for the national Our Town grant program.

Led by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Our Town grant seeks projects that integrate arts, culture, and design into local efforts that ultimately strengthen communities. Successful projects have advanced local, economic, physical, and social outcomes in communities and are laying the groundwork for systemic changes. Projects require a partnership between a nonprofit organization and a local government entity, with one of the partners being a cultural organization. Matching grants range from $25,000 to $150,000, with a minimum cost share/match equal to the grant amount. 
"Art is important in making a resilient and equitable Houston," said Mayor Sylvester Turner. "I'm excited to see our city's creativity reflected in the proposals that will be submitted for this opportunity with the NEA Our Town grant. Our artists and organizations are a testament to how far the city has come in ensuring its residents have equal access to the arts. I look forward to endorsing the best idea to strengthen our communities."

The Our Town grant program supports creative placemaking projects that help transform communities into lively, beautiful, and resilient places with the arts at their core. Projects can include artist residencies, arts festivals, community co-creation of art, performances, public art, cultural planning, cultural district planning, creative asset mapping, public art planning, artist/designer-facilitated community planning, design of artist space, design of cultural facilities, public space design, creative business development, and professional artist development.

The National Endowment for the Arts limits the number of Our Town grant applicants per city and requires a letter of endorsement from the Mayor. Applications that respond to the City's Resilience Plan and/or Complete Communities will be most competitive for an endorsement.

For more about the Resiliency Plan and Complete Communities, visit www.houstontx.gov/mayor/Resilient-Houston-20200402-double-page.pdf and www.houstontx.gov/completecommunities.

To be considered for endorsement, applicants should submit their concepts with confirmed artists and partners no later than June 28, 2022, to Cultural.Affairs@houstontx.gov.

Applicants should consult the Our Town grant program website, which includes guidance and resources, including case studies for developing successful projects: www.arts.gov/grants-organizations/our-town/introduction.

Successful applicants will receive the required endorsement letter to include with their final submission to the National Endowment for the Arts, due on August 4, 2022.

To learn more about the City's cultural programs, visit www.houstontx.gov/culturalaffairs and follow the Mayor's Office of Cultural Affairs on Facebook and Instagram @HoustonMOCA.