Preserve Route 66 Legacy Business Grant Fund Newly Launched

Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway

The Preserve Route 66 Legacy Business Grant Fund provides financial support to businesses to preserve historic places and spur economic development along the Route 66 corridor, with an emphasis on projects that illuminate the narratives of communities whose places and stories have been historically underrepresented.

Grants from the Preserve Route 66 Legacy Business Grant Fund are designed to help business owners advance projects in the following three categories: (1) capital improvements, (2) planning, and (3) marketing and outreach. Eligible projects will be located in the broader Route 66 corridor including communities and neighborhoods along Route 66. Grants will generally range from $5,000 to $10,000, and no match is required.

The deadline for this program will be January 12, 2024. Projects must be located in a community, neighborhood or tribal land along the Route 66 corridor in the following states: Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, or California. While businesses do not need to be located directly on Route 66, they should demonstrate geographic or thematic connections to Route 66.

Eligible entities are those:
That are small/independently owned legacy businesses or businesses in historic or old buildings.
That contribute to the history and/or identity of its surrounding Route 66 community or neighborhood.
That have a compelling and inspiring historical narrative or cultural significance to share.
That have a physical location (meaning “brick-and-mortar” location).
That are a registered business entity in good standing in the state or tribal land in which it was formed and the state or tribal land in which it does business (e.g., not an unincorporated contractor).
That are not part of a national franchise.
That are existing or new business seeking assistance to open a business in an existing vacant or underutilized Route 66 building (for example, to complete a preservation or business plan) is eligible.

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Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway