AUSTIN (KXAN) — The City of Austin Economic Development Department announced grants to support creative organizations and artists facing displacement.

The Creative Space Assistance Program is providing $1.5 million in available funding, which will offer grants between $5,000 and $50,000 to creative organizations and independent artists facing displacement or new commercial leases at higher and unaffordable rates.

Grant funds may be used for revenue-generating space improvements, lease payments and gap financing for creative space purchases.

Applications for the Creative Space Assistance Program will open Tuesday, Jan. 24 at 10 a.m. and close Tuesday, Feb. 28 at 5 p.m.

Independent artists leasing commercial studio space, nonprofit arts organizations and for-profit live music venues, performance spaces and art galleries can apply to the Creative Space Assistance Program during the application period.

Eligible applicant creative spaces must be located within the Austin city limits or a surrounding extraterritorial jurisdiction and operate within appropriately zoned commercial spaces. Grants will be awarded on a competitive basis and scored according to access to services, compelling project need, urgency, co-location, community benefit, equity and new recipient status.
 
When the application opens on Jan. 24, Creative Space Assistance Program’s website will offer a webinar to learn more about the program and application process.

“Austin’s creative organizations and independent artists are a cornerstone of our city’s unique identity,” said Sylnovia Holt-Rabb, director for the City of Austin Economic Development Department. “These grants will be an investment in local creative organizations and professionals, who are not immune to the rising costs of operating a business in the city. Our team is proud to make this critical funding available so creatives can continue their impactful work that benefits all in our community.”

For assistance related to program guidelines, contact the Music & Entertainment Division by email at music@austintexas.gov or by phone at 512-974-7963. Weekly virtual office hours will be available while the application is open on Thursdays from 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.
 
Submit the Creative Space Assistance Program application Jan. 24 at 10 a.m. through Feb. 28 at 5 p.m. Full eligibility requirements, grant guidelines and application details are available to review online.