Bold ideas wanted to make Covington a better place

Covington is looking for bold ideas to improve its neighborhoods and gathering places. And it’s putting real money behind its request.

The city has a new competitive grant program to help make visionary ideas reality. Its Quality of Place Grant Program is a competitive effort that supports the city’s economic development big-picture strategy of “Experiencing Covington.” 

The city has allocated $125,000 for grants this fiscal year, and applicants can request a grant of $1,000 to $30,000.

City leaders are looking for ideas on how to creatively enhance the physical appearance of one of the business districts or nodes, ideas that build a sense of place through improvements, new works of public art, or public gathering places. Support from adjacent property owners will make the applications more competitive, they say.

Projects must enhance the quality of place in the business node or neighborhood through visible physical improvements, or they must activate a neglected or underused space. They must also have a citywide benefit. The physical improvements or art may be permanent or temporary.

They ask that projects embrace the economic development department’s “manifesto” which says, in part, that Covington is “the bold side of the river … where past meets progress … and y’all really means all.”

“The grant enables citizens, nonprofits – really anyone – to work with the city and spend some money to make our community a better place to live, work and play,” says Kyle Snyder, the project manager. “Tying the grant to the new Economic Development manifesto will make it interesting.”

A committee of city staff will evaluate the submissions based on a scoring criteria and then recommend proposals to the Covington Board of Commissioners.

The grant has an application deadline of 4 p.m. Nov. 18. You can find the application (and the complete manifesto) here.
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David Holthaus is an award-winning journalist and a Cincinnati native. When not writing or editing, he's likely to be bicycling, hiking, reading, or watching classic movies.