The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has announced the availability of $256 million in Choice Neighborhoods Implementation (CNI) Grants funding to communities across the country. The CNI Grants will ultimately transform public and other HUD-assisted housing, while investing in the surrounding neighborhood and resident services. Public housing authorities, local governments, and/or Tribal entities are eligible and encouraged to apply for these transformative grants of up to $50 million each.
“Choice Neighborhoods Implementation Grants are a powerful tool communities can use to revitalize neighborhoods, bringing much-needed housing, services, and amenities to distressed areas,” said HUD Secretary Marcia L. Fudge. “Today, we are pleased to invite public housing authorities, local governments, and Tribal entities to join the program and build on successes we’ve seen across the country. These $50 million awards are a once-in-a-generation investment in the housing, neighborhoods, and people that need it most.”
Increased appropriations and a renewed national interest are fueling Choice Neighborhoods’ expansion to distressed communities across America. While cities such as Los Angeles, Philadelphia, and Phoenix are grant recipients, mid-sized and smaller cities such as Flint, Michigan; Lewiston, Maine; and Tulsa, Oklahoma have also received awards. This funding cycle will lead to six new Choice Neighborhoods Implementation Grants in 2024. CNI Grants primarily fund the redevelopment of severely distressed HUD properties into a mixed-income community.
The program has a three-pronged “Housing, People, and Neighborhood” approach that includes not only the redevelopment of distressed properties, but also supports outcomes related to the residents' health, education, and income while simultaneously investing in economic development and neighborhood improvement projects. This comprehensive approach means that grantees must be able to leverage the funds they receive from HUD with other public and private resources.
HUD’s announcement follows the Department’s recent $370 million award of eight new Choice Neighborhoods Implementation Grants representing the cities of Atlanta; Birmingham, Alabama; Lake Charles, Louisiana; Miami; Philadelphia; Pittsburgh; Tucson, Arizona; and Wilmington, Delaware. Demonstrating the impact of Choice Neighborhoods investments locally, these eight recent awards will collectively invest $3 billion in distressed neighborhoods, and create more than 5,000 new housing units.
Since the inception of the Choice Neighborhoods program, the program has completed 13,000 new mixed-income units built across 52 cities. More than 37,000 units are planned. HUD has awarded more than $1.7 billion in Implementation Grant funds to date. The Choice Neighborhoods program has led to new businesses, parks, and grocery stores, while resident incomes are increasing across most cities, in some cases doubling. A recent study conducted by Case Western Reserve University on the Chicago Choice Neighborhood showed HUD’s investment generated $400 million in public and private resources. In addition, the study found median household incomes increased, crime rates fell steadily, and home ownership rates increased.