Nebraska Department of Economic Development Awards $6.2 Million of Community Development Block Grant Funds

Nebraska Department of Economic Development Awards $6.2 Million of Community Development Block Grant Funds
November 20th, 2023 | Courtesy

November 20, 2023 (LINCOLN, NEB.) – The Nebraska Department of Economic Development (DED) has awarded $6,184,082 in Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds to nineteen (19) communities through the 2023 Downtown Revitalization, Planning, and Public Works opportunities.

The CDBG program provides funds to help communities tackle projects that enhance public health and safety, economic well-being, local vitality, and quality of life. The program is federally funded through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). DED administers the CDBG program on behalf of Nebraska’s non-entitlement communities. The entitlement communities of Lincoln, Omaha, Bellevue and Grand Island administer the CDBG program in their own areas.

“In today’s economic climate, people attraction is our top priority,” said DED Director K.C. Belitz. “When making career decisions, working professionals increasingly consider the place right alongside the job. These CDBG awards give critical support to placemaking projects that revitalize downtowns, improve parks, and upgrade communities’ curb appeal. Congratulations to the awardees for initiating these major quality-of-life enhancements.”

All of the funded communities outlined a solid approach to impactful community development, demonstrating collaboration and support from local businesses and residents. Brief community project descriptions are listed below.

2023 CDBG Program Awardees

Downtown Revitalization:

  • Beatrice ($435,000) to continue existing downtown revitalization efforts to address slum and blight conditions by rehabilitating several commercial storefronts in the downtown business district. 
  • Columbus ($435,000) to continue the rehabilitation of deteriorating commercial properties and make sidewalk updates to ensure the downtown has ADA accessibility.  
  • Cozad ($435,000) to continue to improve its historic downtown by upgrading commercial buildings to improve the aesthetic quality and increase economic activity.
  • Falls City ($435,000) to continue efforts to revitalize the downtown district by updating the façades of commercial properties and replacing sidewalks to ensure ADA accessibility.  
  • Fremont ($435,000) to continue improving the conditions of downtown commercial properties to attract new businesses and bring additional visitors to the downtown area.
  • Norfolk ($435,000) to improve the appearance and accessibility of the downtown area through building façade improvements and ADA sidewalk upgrades. 
  • Sidney ($415,000) to rehabilitate deteriorating buildings in the historic downtown district to create economic assets.  

Planning:

  • Ansley ($39,000) to update a comprehensive plan, zoning ordinances, and a housing study.
  • Gibbon ($53,000) to create a downtown revitalization plan.
  • Ravenna ($53,000) to complete a planning study involving parks and recreational systems.
  • Stamford ($53,000) to conduct a water drainage study and a comprehensive housing study.
  • Tecumseh ($53,000) to create a downtown revitalization plan.

Public Works:

  • Lyons ($415,312) for park improvements.
  • South Sioux City ($405,000) to purchase a new aerial fire truck.
  • Wolbach ($430,000) for park improvements.
  • Deshler ($430,000) for comprehensive water infrastructure improvements.
  • Leshara ($367,770) for a storm drainage improvement project for commercial and residential properties.
  • Ravenna ($430,000) to make sidewalk, curb/gutter, and alley improvements in the downtown.
  • Wymore ($430,000) for a street improvement project.

For additional information about funding opportunities available to Nebraska communities under the CDBG program, visit opportunity.nebraska.gov/programs/community/cdbg, or contact Steve Charleston at steve.charleston@nebraska.gov

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