New Orleans Business Alliance

Resilient Corridors Initiative

The City of New Orleans and the New Orleans Business Alliance (NOLABA) are launching a $350,000 pilot program to support businesses and commercial corridors within the following seven neighborhoods identified as part of the NOLABA Strategic Neighborhood Development (SND) Strategy: New Orleans East, Lower 9, Hollygrove, Gert Town, Gentilly, Treme, and Algiers. These communities have experienced decades of disinvestment, leaving surrounding businesses more vulnerable to economic and environmental disasters, such as the current COVID-19 pandemic.

As part of an intentional and strategic response to meet the needs of these vital communities, the City of New Orleans and NOLABA launched a joint program, the “Resilient Corridors Initiative,” to provide financial support to businesses to ensure their ability to continue operations through COVID-19 and continue to be anchors for future economic growth within these strategic neighborhoods.

NOLABA and the City will invest $250k to initiate the pilot program, which will support a cohort of 40 businesses currently located or with plans to expand within the target neighborhoods. Businesses chosen to participate in the pilot program will receive $5,000 in grant funding and technical support from a cadre of diverse experts and practitioners that will provide several hours of professional service to the businesses to help implement strategies to sustain their presence through this period of economic downturn and recovery. Technical assistance will be tailored specifically to the needs of each business participating in the pilot program.

In addition to direct support for businesses within these key areas, NOLABA has invested $100,000 in projects that advance commercial revitalization efforts and build economic development capacity within the seven targeted neighborhoods through partnerships with the New Orleans Redevelopment Authority (NORA) and a coalition of community organizations. 

The projects include business retention, attraction, and placemaking activities intended to increase the economic vitality of these important New Orleans neighborhoods, directly benefiting small businesses and the surrounding residents they serve.

QUICK FACTS

  • Interested businesses must have been in existence for at least 18 months, have a physical presence within one of the seven neighborhoods, or have a signed lease/contract to open a business within one of the seven neighborhoods. Acceptance into this pilot is based on a competitive application process.

  • Businesses will be selected to participate in the pilot program following a review process based on several criteria, including business impact on the surrounding community, immediate and long-term business viability, and how the business intends to use grant funding and technical assistance. 

  • Each business will be awarded a maximum grant of $5k, in addition to customized assistance from professional service providers.

  • Businesses will be required to document and report on their usage of the grant within 30 days of receipt.

  • Professional services will be procured through the NOLABA Opportunities Portal.

NOLABA has resumed accepting applications for the Resilient Corridors Initiative.

The deadline for submitting applications is December 14

Participants in the pilot program will be selected by December 21.

Application

*NOTICE*

If you are not ready to submit your application please remember to use the "save and continue later" feature.  The application will generate a link on this page that will allow you to complete and submit the application at a later time. If you fail to use this feature you may need to submit a new application. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  • What is the small business grant program?

    The City of New Orleans and the New Orleans Business Alliance, as part of the Resilient Corridors Initiative, established a pilot program to provide $5k grants and professional assistance to businesses that contribute to the vitality of the 7 corridors identified as part of the NOLABA Strategic Neighborhood Development Strategy: Algiers, Gentilly, Gert Town, Hollygrove, Lower Ninth Ward, New Orleans East, and Treme businesses will be selected following a competitive application review based on business impact within the surrounding community, business viability, and how the business anticipates participation in the pilot will enable it to sustain operations within one of the 7 corridors.
  • Who is eligible to apply for the program?

    • Businesses in operation for a minimum of 18 months
    • Businesses located (or will locate) in one of the eligible corridor areas.
      • Algiers
      • Gentilly
      • Hollygrove
      • Lower Ninth Ward
      • New Orleans East
      • Treme 
    • Businesses whose operations were interrupted and/or suffered losses as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

    Ineligible entities: 

    • Non-profit organizations
    • Independent Contractors
  • What documents are required to apply?

    • Evidence of legal business registration.
    • 2019 and 2020 Profit & Loss Statements or
    • Most recent tax return
    • Evidence that your business is (or will locate) in one of the eligible corridor areas:
      • Algiers
      • Gentilly
      • Hollygrove
      • Lower Ninth Ward
      • New Orleans East
      • Treme
  • Why were these neighborhood corridors selected and will more corridors be added after the initial pilot program is complete?

    The New Orleans Business Alliance’s Strategic Neighborhood Development strategy is comprised of these seven neighborhoods. Historically, these neighborhoods have experienced either disinvestment or lack of proportional economic growth. Following environmental or economic disaster, data reflects that these neighborhoods could see recoveries that lag behind the rest of the City, unless we have direct interventions designed to sustain the economic corridors in these neighborhoods. Local businesses in these communities are more likely to hire neighborhood residents. Vibrant corridors increase residential property values and create wealth building opportunities. Investing in these corridors therefore has a transformative impact not just on these neighborhoods, but on the entire City.

    No decision has been made on whether a 2nd phase of this of this program would include additional neighborhoods, or allow for the participation of more businesses within the 7 neighborhoods outlined in the pilot.

  • Can ineligible businesses or those who are not approved for the grant utilize the customized technical assistance?

    Unfortunately, not. The technical assistance that will be provided is limited; the budget allocated for those services is only sufficient to complement the total number of grantees.
  • Is there a list of allowable expenses for the grant?

    No. The program is competitive; we are seeking businesses that can articulate the most effective use of the grant investment and technical assistance to leverage the business’ existing resources that will aid in sustaining their business operations.
  • If a business participates in the pilot, are they eligible to participate in the full program?

    No. The program allows for one grant per business owner.
  • When will the grants be awarded? How will funds be deployed?

    The final date for application submission is November 9, 2020. We expect that grantees will be selected during the week of November 16. Grants funds will be distributed via mail or wire transfer.

    Awardees will be contacted to arrange technical assistance.
  • Does all of the required documentation have to be included at the time the application is submitted? Can I submit my application and subsequently send the required documents prior to November 9th?

    It is our intent to evaluate every application received. Awards are not based on first come – first served. The program is competitive and in order to give a fair evaluation to every applicant, it is imperative that we have the ability to evaluate the same information for all applicants. The application portal will not provide the ability to resubmit additional documentation once an application has been submitted; therefore, you should have all documents available to upload with your application.

    Any application received without the required documents will be rendered ineligible and will not be evaluated.
  • Will preference be given to businesses and/or industries that were mandated to close due to the pandemic, over essential businesses or those that were able to continue operating?

    No. The program is competitive; we are seeking businesses that can make a compelling case demonstrating the most effective and impactful use of the grant funding and accompanying technical assistance to sustain their business operations.
  • Will preference be given to businesses who have not received federal COVID-19 relief loans or state monetary support?

    No. The process is competitive; we are seeking businesses that can make a compelling case demonstrating the most effective and impactful use of the grant funding and accompanying technical assistance to sustain their business operations.
  • Will applying for this grant affect the SBA COVID-19 loan programs [Payroll Protection Program (PPP) and/or Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL)] or Louisiana State Mainstreet grant my business received?

    The source of the grant funding is from the City of New Orleans Business Attraction Fund, and it will not impact the status of any federal or state assistance you receive.
  • How was the grant amount determined?

    The grant amount was determined based on the fixed amount of funding provided by the City of New Orleans, and by ascertaining an appropriate number of businesses that could be assisted with the amount of the investment.
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New Orleans, LA 70113
info@nolaba.org | 504.934.4500