USDA Seeks Applications for Capacity Building and Planning Grants in Rural Communities

Erin McDuff
Release Date
Aug 10, 2020

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development is accepting applications to help rural communities enhance their capacity for broadband access; preserve cultural and historic structures; and support the development of transportation, housing, and recreational spaces.

Rural Development is making $1 million in grants available through the Rural Placemaking Innovation Challenge (RPIC). These grants may be used to develop multi-jurisdictional plans to benefit towns with a population of 50,000 or less. Organizations can use the grants to identify community needs, convene partners, develop actionable plans, and implement priorities to build rural prosperity.

Public and private groups, organizations, and institutions that demonstrate experience in providing placemaking technical assistance to rural communities are eligible to apply. USDA is seeking to partner with one organization each in the northeastern, southern, midwestern, and western regions of the United States. 

USDA encourages applicants to develop plans that will provide measurable results and help create livable communities; encourage partnerships; contribute to long-term community investment; and support community resiliency, social stability, and collective identity.

The maximum grant amount is $250,000. Applicants must provide a 15 percent funding match. Eligible placemaking plans will provide assistance to rural communities for two years.

Electronic applications must be submitted via with a copy of the submission emailed to by 9:00 p.m. Pacific Time on September 10, 2020.

For additional information or to discuss a potential application, contact Angela Callie, Community Economic Coordinator, (202) 568-9738.