2023 Connecticut Communities Challenge Grant Program (Round 3)

The Department of Economic and Community Development (“DECD”) is undertaking a competitive grant application process to fund multiple projects under the CT Communities Challenge Grant Program in an effort to improve livability, vibrancy, convenience, and equity of communities throughout the state.

Donor Name: Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development

State: Connecticut

County: All Counties

Type of Grant: Grant

Deadline: 05/03/2023

Size of the Grant: $1M to $10M


Connecticut Communities Challenge Program is intended to potentially create approximately 3,000 new jobs. It is DECD’s goal to allocate up to 50% of the funds to eligible and competitive projects in distressed municipalities.

Successful projects will likely include multiple of the below elements:

  • Transit-oriented development that densifies commercial and/or residential land uses near transit hubs,
  • Downtown / major hub development that improves or reuses existing property (Brownfields remediation may be a component of such application)
  • Essential infrastructure that facilitates future development
  • Housing to support affordability, accessibility and local workforce,
  • Mobility improvements that increase connectivity to transit and promotes economic activity, including pedestrian, ADA, and bicycle improvements
  • Public space improvements that provide amenities to the community, including open spaces, public art projects, way finding, and lighting and safety improvements

Other projects that will enhance the livability, vibrancy, convenience, and equity of communities throughout the state are also eligible, provided that other DECD funding does not support such projects through current or future dedicated programs (e.g., Brownfields grants).

Funding Information

$1M to $10M per project. Applications requesting grant amounts outside this range are ineligible.

Eligibility Criteria

Municipalities, economic development agencies and regional councils of governments are eligible to be the primary applicants for this Program.  DECD encourages public-private partnerships.  Eligible entities are welcome to partner with one or more of the following types of organizations: private developers, business organizations, other institutions, or each other to apply.

Eligible Uses of Funds

DECD prefers that nearly all (more than 95%) of grant funds be used for construction- and renovation-related hard costs. It is preferable that soft costs (design and engineering-related soft costs, land acquisition, project management, administrative and DECD’s legal expenses to prepare the Contract) are funded from non-DECD sources. DECD’s legal expenses for the DECD contract work (Assistance Agreement) are usually in the range of $5K to $10K depending on how complicated the project is.

For more information, visit CDECD.