Community Development Grants

The City of Chicago and Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot are committed to strengthening local business corridors and enhancing neighborhood vitality. Throughout 2021, the Department of Planning and Development (DPD) has supported a diverse set of projects that brought more than $500 million in development investment to Chicago’s neighborhoods.

The Chicago Recovery Plan provides additional opportunities for the City to invest in catalytic local development, expanding upon DPD’s existing investments and support.

DPD is now accepting applications for grant funding to support local commercial, mixed-use, and light manufacturing development. All are welcome to apply. City staff will prioritize projects in areas of Chicago where there is a history of disinvestment or limited private investment.

Eligibility

  • Grant funding can be used for pre-development, construction, or renovation costs for permanent capital improvement projects.
  • Open to community developers, business owners and entrepreneurs, and property owners. Site control is preferred, but not required.
  • Residential-only development is not eligible, but mixed-use projects are eligible. Further funding opportunities for residential projects are expected to be announced in Q1 2022.
  • Priority will be given to catalytic projects with a strong local impact, that are able to leverage local talents, capacities, and institutions to strengthen and contribute to the community.
  • Applicants from all areas of Chicago are eligible to apply. Priority will be given for projects in historically disinvested areas as well as projects that build upon existing efforts, such as Mayor Lightfoot’s INVEST South/West initiative and community safety initiatives.
  • Priority will be given to projects that demonstrate momentum and are expected to break ground in 2022.
  • The City expects awards to be capped at $5 million, though larger, catalytic projects may be considered.

Deadline

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis. The deadline for this year’s final round is August 19, 2022. Applicants who are not prepared to apply this round are encouraged to review all relevant materials and prepare to apply for a potential future round in 2023. 

Please do not submit duplicative applications for the same project.

Prepare to Apply

Applications will be segmented based on size of the grant. Grant requests should represent no more than 75 percent of anticipated total project cost.

Grants for less than $250,000 (Small) >>

Grants for more than $250,000 (Large) >>

For advice and potential resources to help with your application, please go to the Community Development Grant Resources page.