Project Funding Available Through the Iowa Downtown Resource Center

November 1, 2021

The Iowa Downtown Resource Center currently has two applications open for funding downtown building rehabilitation projects.

Community Catalyst Building Remediation Program

Through the Community Catalyst Building Remediation Program, the IEDA will provide grants to communities for the redevelopment, rehabilitation or deconstruction of buildings to stimulate economic growth or reinvestment in the community. Strong applications will show the potential of catalytic economic growth in the community; improve appearances and safety; make use of underutilized property, exhibit appropriate design standards; and be well-funded. Economic growth may include the creation of additional jobs, growth of new or existing businesses, development of new housing units, increase property values or potential population growth. More information is available at Those interested in applying can locate the pre-application for this grant under the funding opportunities area at  Questions regarding this grant opportunity can be directed to

  • Pre-application open until January 28, 2022
  • Full application deadline April 15, 2022 (must be invited to apply)
  • Announcement of awards June 2022

  • Funding based on annual availability 
  • Maximum grant: $100,000 · 40% of funds will be awarded to cities with populations under 1,500 
  • A mandatory pre-application process will precede the official grant application 
  • Applications are by invitation only, after approved pre-application 
  • City must be the applicant and provide financial and/or in-kind resources 
  • Funds available for the rehabilitation of one commercial building per community or two buildings with same ownership that are adjacent 
  • Deconstruction is allowed in dire situations or for safety reasons
SCORING CRITERIA (50 points total)
  • Project impact (0-30 points)
  • Project appropriateness (0-10 points)
  • Project funding/partnerships (0-10 points)

Downtown Housing Grant

The newly created Downtown Housing Grant provides $20 million in financial assistance for projects supporting local downtown revitalization through new and renovated housing opportunities in communities under 30,000. This funding invests in building rehabilitation projects to increase local upper floor housing options. Projects creating or improving under 10 housing units are eligible for $100,000 to $300,000, while projects creating 10 plus units are eligible for $100,000 to $600,000. The City must be the applicant. More information can be located at Questions regarding this grant opportunity can be directed to

  • Applications open September 8
  • Application deadline January 31, 2022
  • Awards announcement: March 23, 2022

  • Projects located in a community under 30,000 in population (2020 census)
  • Project focus must be the creation of new upper story housing in existing downtown buildings
  • Project can include one building per community or two adjacent buildings with same ownership
  • Vacant school buildings or other large, underutilized facilities within the vicinity of the downtown area
  • Project expenses can include:
    • Upper floor rehabilitation for housing
    • Structural stabilization of historic downtown buildings
    • Exterior building improvements relating to the housing project
    • Code and accessibility improvements for apartments
    • Exterior building amenities that directly complement the housing project (e.g., patios, tenant parking, etc.)
    • Residential units must have some interior amenity component (e.g., rooftop patios, laundry, LED lighting, High Efficiency HVAC, etc.)
  • Projects that include first floor storefront housing or residential temporary lodging
  • Projects located outside of the downtown district vicinity
  • Projects that do not include a housing element
  • Acquisition costs not considered part of the project costs or eligible expenses
SCORING CRITERIA (100 points total)
  • Project Appropriateness (0-25 points)
  • Project Funding/Partnerships (0-25 points)
  • Project impact on housing in the community/downtown district (0-25 points)
  • Project impact on community/downtown district (0-20 points)
  • Population size
    • Under 1,500     5 points
    • 1,501-5,000    4 points
    • 5,001-10,000    3 points
    • 10,001-20,000    2 points
    • 20,001-30,000    1 point

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