Mayor Jon Mitchell announced today a funding opportunity for facilities in the City’s Arts & Culture sector that need capital investments and support to revitalize their buildings, equipment, and outdoor spaces.
Arts & Culture is a vital segment of New Bedford’s economy and community that has huge impacts on quality of life and job creation, with significant potential growth and development opportunities for existing and emerging cultural enterprises.
The City therefore is seeking Expressions of Interest from owners and operators of privately owned cultural facilities – for-profit or nonprofit – that are seeking financial support for capital investments such as building stabilization; roof repair; improved outdoor spaces; audio-visual equipment that enables “hybrid” events, such as remote participation in live events; renovations that increase or improve occupancy; and more.
“Cultural facilities across the City support small businesses and are themselves economic anchors in their neighborhoods,” Mayor Jon Mitchell said. “We want to accelerate their emergence from the pandemic by helping them upgrade their buildings and grounds.”
Cultural facilities and organizations enable public access to, and participation with, the arts, history, and humanities, while also helping preserve and promote the customs and cultural heritage of a group or groups of people.
Expressions of Interest are informal, shortened applications that allow feedback about eligibility before a full application is begun. An evaluation team will review proposals, and selected applicants will receive financial support funded by the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA).
Release of funding to selected applicants will be contingent on meeting a minimum match requirement, which will be no less than 25% of total project costs. The applicant’s operating costs and funding from other ARPA-funded programs may not be used as matching funds.
Currently, the minimum grant award is $100,000 and the maximum is $400,000. This means that that total project cost must be at least $125,000, including matching funds.
As ARPA represents a one-time infusion of federal funds, financial support will be steered toward one-time items, rather than the creation of new programs or the expansion of existing services that would involve future spending obligations. Requests for funding to cover general operating expenses will not be considered.
The deadline for submissions of Expression of Interest is Friday, June 10.
Email questions about the Expression of Interest to: ARPA@newbedford-ma.gov.
All responses are to be submitted electronically in an editable Word or OpenDocument Format document to: ARPA@newbedford-ma.gov, with the name of your organization and “Cultural Facilities Expression of Interest” in the subject line.
Eligible owners and operators of privately owned cultural facilities can download an Expression of Interest outline on the City’s ARPA website: