Published On: February 20th, 2024Categories: Uncategorized

The KDP Micro-Grant program is to provide opportunities for businesses to activate their spaces in a meaningful way that will positively affect the community.

Placemaking inspires people to collectively reimagine and reinvent public spaces as the heart of every community. To strengthen the connection between people and the places they share, placemaking refers to a collaborative process that can shape our public realm to maximize shared value.

More than just promoting better urban design, placemaking facilitates creative patterns of use, paying particular attention to the physical, cultural, and social identities that define a place and support its ongoing evolution.

The program provides micro-grants to qualifying downtown businesses and property owners. Grants are defined in two categories.

  • Physical space improvement includes façade refreshing and can include projects like cleaning awnings, installing/refreshing flower boxes, lighting, painting, and signage, repairing windows or doors, art installations.
  • Event space activation 
  • Event space activation envisioned for businesses to host new* events that invite people into your space.  This could include ladies’ nights, musical performances, DJs, temporary art installations, or other creative experiences within your space, sidewalk or alleyway that are free to the public and promote downtown.    (* new meaning: not an existing and/or regularly occurring event you are currently producing).

Applications will be vetted by the KDP Design and Promotions committees with staff assistance, utilizing the following criteria to evaluate each application.

Note:  Preference will be given to applications where activation meets more than one criterion.

  • Cultural Community Support – How well does the activation provide a rich cultural experience? Does this project add to the attractiveness of the downtown?
  • Impact on Activation Site – How impactful is the activation to the applicant and nearby businesses? Does this project enhance the site?
  • Diversity of Activation – How well does the activation incorporate diversity and inclusion in activation and audience? Does this project attract more people into our downtown?
  • Investment Ratio– Does the applicant also plan to invest in the activation?


Eligible businesses will receive reimbursement up to $500.   Funds will be awarded when documentation of project is complete or 30 days post event date. Businesses can apply once per seasonal opportunity.


To be eligible to receive a micro-grant, applicants must agree to the following:

  1. Operate a street-level business or own a property within the historic Downtown Kent core (generally located between Central and 4th Ave, Willis and Smith)
  2. Produce space activation(s) within the specified timeline for the grant cycle.
  3. Submit either a project schematic or an in-depth description of the project/event concept. For physical space applications, please also include 1-2 photos of the project before improvement.
  4. During the activation or post improvement: capture 3-5 photos and tag the KDP on social media using Instagram (@kentdowntownpartnership) and Facebook (@KentDowntownPartnershis)– OR – Businesses must email 1-3 high-quality photos to and provide the Rights to Use for KDP marketing efforts.


  • All are welcome to apply. The committee will give preference to applicants not previously awarded micro-grant(s).
  • Paid employee time is not eligible for reimbursement.
  • Projects must benefit the downtown.


  • Applications                                            Open February 1
  • Applications accepted                           Feb 1 – Oct 30
  • Decision notification                            Within 21 days of application or sooner
  • Project completion                                Projects should be completed as soon as possible or within 180 days award.

For more information, please contact Executive Director  or 253-813-6976

To apply click HERE

  • *Please refer to the City of Kent Community Planning and Development department for detailed information about signage within the downtown.
  • Additional permits or licenses may be necessary.  Please contact City of Kent Planning Dept to inquire:  Phone: 253-856-545

photo courtesy of


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