NEW YORK (WWTI) — New York communities have the opportunity to receive funding to restore and improve their neighborhoods through the Restore New York grant program.

The $250 million program will officially open on July 11 with the goal of encouraging community development and neighborhood growth by eliminating and redeveloping older structures. The program is open to municipalities to support projects that focus on demolishing, rehabilitating, and restoring residential, commercial, and mixed-use buildings.

Grants will be awarded in two rounds this year, with $100 million available in the first round and $150 million available in round two. New York Governor Kathy Hochul stressed the importance of providing funding to improve communities in a press release.

“I have traveled to every corner of the state and have seen first-hand the potential that lies in so many of New York’s blighted, older buildings,” Governor Hochul said. “These spaces once had purpose and are now in need of funding and vision to breathe new life into neighborhoods. Restore New York funding gives localities the resources to transform abandoned and neglected properties, helping rebuild and strengthen communities across the state.”  

Funding through the program can be used for vacant, abandoned, condemned, or surplus buildings, and used towards demolishing, deconstructing, rehabilitating, or reconstructing the properties. Emphasis will be placed on projects in economically distressed communities, projects that leverage other state or federal redevelopment funds, and the project’s feasibility and readiness.

Eligible applicants include counties, cities, towns, and villages within New York State based on the following criteria: 

  • Cities over 100,000 in population may apply for up to $5 million for one project. However, cities of over 1 million in population and counties therein must apply for projects in a distressed area of the city  
  • Cities and villages with populations between 40,000 and 99,999 may apply for one project up to $3 million 
  • All other municipalities may apply for one project up to $2 million 

Those interested must turn in an intent to apply form to Empire State Development by August 11. More information on the program and requirements can be found here. The request for proposal and full guidelines will be available on July 11.