Urban and Community Development Program

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The Urban and Community Development Program (UCDP) encourages economic and employment opportunities for New York State's citizens and stimulates development of communities and urban areas.

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The Urban and Community Development Program (UCDP) offers assistance with preference given to projects located in highly distressed communities and for projects where other public or private funding sources are not available.  Assistance is awarded on a competitive basis, in response to requests for proposals and through direct applications.  Loan and grant amounts are determined based on both project location and project costs.

UCDP offers:

  • urban and community development assistance;
  • urban and community project development assistance (grants, loans and loan guarantees);
  • neighborhood and community partnership assistance;
  • urban and community commercial revitalization revolving loan and loan guarantee fund assistance; and
  • urban and community technical assistance
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Urban and Community Development Assistance

  • Minimum Requirements: Projects may be required to match the amount of any grant awarded. 
  • Eligible Applicants: 
    • business improvement districts (BIDs)
    • local development corporations
    • other not-for-profit economic development organizations 
    • municipalities involved in commercial revitalization activities in central business districts or commercial strips
  • Eligible Projects: 
    • architectural design studies and services and other redevelopment work in connection with the design and implementation of a plan for façade and other improvements to commercial strips and central business districts throughout New York State
    • marketing and promotional activities
    • job placement programs
    • security assistance
    • energy audit programs
    • assistance in forming BIDs
    • surveys or reports, including feasibility studies and preliminary planning studies
  • Ineligible Projects:  salaries, public improvements and services currently provided by local or state government.

Urban and Community Project Development Assistance

  • Minimum Requirements: projects must be located in economic development zones or highly distressed areas.
  • Eligible Applicants: 
    • developers
    • BIDs
    • local development corporations
    • other not-for-profit economic development
    • municipalities
  • Eligible Projects:
    • acquisition, renovation and construction of commercial industrial and mixed-use facilities
    • feasibility or planning studies in connection with such development
  • Ineligible Projects:  publicly owned sites.

Neighborhood and Community Partnership Assistance

  • Minimum Requirements:  grant amounts are determined based on project location and project costs
  • Eligible Applicants: 
    • not-for-profit corporations
    • BIDs
    • community development organizations
  • Eligible Projects:
    • regional and local activities designed to retain existing businesses and jobs within a region or locality, increase the viability of existing businesses and stimulate and encourage the formation of new enterprises and small business growth.​

Urban and Community Commercial Revitalization Revolving Loan and Loan Guarantee Fund Assistance

  • Minimum Requirements:  to stimulate the development of central business districts and commercial strips through a decentralized lending program operated in conjunction with BIDs, local development corporations and other not-for-profits corporations serving central business districts or commercial strips.
  • Eligible Applicants
    • qualified BIDs
    • local development corporations 
    • other not-for-profit corporations
  • Eligible Projects:
    • improvements, expansions and start-ups of businesses located in central business districts and commercial strips.

Urban and Community Technical Assistance

  • Minimum Requirements:  projects may be required to match the amount of any grant awarded.
  • Eligible Applicants:
    • municipalities
    • not-for-profit organizations
    • local development corporations
    • local economic development zone administrative
    • business improvement districts
  • Eligible Projects:  
    • organizing for economic development
    • nalyzing potential development opportunities or obstacles to development 
    • developing economic development strategies, including feasibility studies for the creation of business improvement districts in highly distressed areas
    • strengthening an organization' s capacity to implement economic development, job creation or business retention strategies, including: 
      • technical and financial packaging assistance to local businesses; manage economic development projects; and other economic development services that are identified in their strategic plans.
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How to Apply

Contact your local ESD Regional Office to discuss your project and to review the UCDP rules and regulations for more specific guidance.  Proposals must include a project description, quantified project results, milestone schedule, project budget and cash flow analysis.