Creative Placemaking Initiative

NEWS: 2017-18 Delta Creative Placemaking Initiative Grants Awarded

October 11, 2017 – The Delta Regional Authority, in partnership with leading national arts and government organizations, is pleased to announce $309,000 in seed investments for 16 community projects across eight states through the Delta Creative Placemaking Initiative (DCPI) to stimulate economic and community development through supporting the Delta's arts and cultural sectors. Along with public and private sector partners, total DCPI investment will reach $1.6 million. These investments will enhance the quality of place of rural communities and improve the quality of life for the 10 million people residing in the Mississippi River Delta region and Alabama Black Belt.

View the 2017-18 Delta Creative Placemaking Initiative grant recipients here.

Creative Placemaking: Building an Arts & Cultural Economy

The Delta Regional Authority (DRA), in partnership with leading national arts and government organizations, launched its pilot Delta Creative Placemaking Initiative to strengthen the Delta economy and improve the quality of life for the region’s 10 million residents. DRA will contribute nearly $460,000 to stimulate economic and community development efforts through promoting the unique places, arts, culture, music, and food of Delta communities.

Creative Placemaking Fosters Economic Development

  • Revitalizes vacant and underutilized land, buildings, and infrastructure;
  • Supports job creation in construction, local businesses, and cultural activities;
  • Expands entrepreneurial ranks of artists and designers;
  • Trains the next generation of cultural workers;
  • Attracts and retains non-arts-related businesses and skills; and
  • Enhances the quality of place and improves the quality of life for residents.


Key Facts

  • In 2014, the arts and cultural sectors contributed more than $729 billion or 4.2% to the U.S. economy – in fact, the arts and culture produced more than some other sectors, such as construction ($619 billion) and utilities ($270 billion)
  • Between 1998 and 2014, the contribution of arts and culture to the nation’s gross domestic product grew by more than 35%
  • Spending on arts and cultural goods and services in 2014 reached $1.1 trillion
  • Employment increased by 3.8% to support more than 1 million jobs in core arts and cultural production industries. 


Promoting tourism in El Dorado, Arkansas


Regional Workshops

The Delta Regional Authority’s Creative Placemaking Regional Workshops took place in June and July 2017 throughout the Mississippi River Delta region and Alabama Black Belt. These  workshops were designed to more deeply inform local elected officials, local development districts, economic development staff and leadership, and other non-arts sector decision-makers about the creative placemaking approach and DRA’s Delta Creative Placemaking Pilot Initiative. They also intended to provide an invaluable training opportunity for municipal, county/parish, and economic development organization teams planning to submit proposals for the Delta Creative Placemaking Investment program. As indicated in the Delta Creative Placemaking Pilot Initiative NOFA, partnerships submitting investment applications were required to have principals attend at least one of these Regional Workshops.

Date Location Venue Address
June 26-27 Paducah, KY 
Workshop Complete
Paducah Area Chamber of Commerce 300 South 3rd Street 
June 29-30 Wilson, AR
Workshop Complete
The Grange at Wilson Gardens 15 South Jefferson Street
July 6-7 Greenville, MS
Workshop Complete
E.E. Bass Cultural Arts Center 323 South Main Street
July 10-11 Vicksburg, MS
Workshop Complete
Vicksburg Convention Center 1600 Mulberry Street 
July 13-14 Tuskegee, AL
Workshop Complete
Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center 1 Booker T. Washington Blvd.
July 17-18

Arnaudville, LA
Workshop Complete

NUNU Arts and Culture Collective 1510 Bayou Courtableau Hwy 
Workshop Schedule Day 1: 8:30 am - 5:30 pm Day 2: 8:30 am - 12:45 pm

Access Workshop Resources


How to Apply

Local government entities, in partnership with at least one non-profit organization, can submit applications for Delta Creative Placemaking seed investments up to $30,000 beginning in May 2017. In addition to the seed investment, successful applicants will also receive up to 50 hours of coaching, mentoring and technical assistance to advance creative placemaking efforts in their communities. 

The 2017-18 Delta Creative Placemaking Initiative application cycle is closed. View this year's DCPI grant recipients here.

Important Dates:

  • Notices of Intent to Apply for funding are due Friday, August 4, 2017 by 5:00pm Central Standard Time
  • Applications are due Monday, August 21, 2017 by 5:00pm Central Standard Time
  • Awards will be announced on October 11, 2017

Additional Materials:

Creative Placemaking
Notice of Intent to Apply

Creative Placemaking
Initiative FY2017 NOFA

Creative Placemaking
Initiative Info Flyer

NEA Whitepaper
on Creative Placemaking








More Information

For more information on the Delta Creative Placemaking Initiative, contact Alex Holland at